And the last shred of patience I ever had.
The Boy is six, and is off-the-chart-smart, requiring no entertaining on my part what-so-ever. He is a real firecracker, and just listening to him as he is playing is a hoot. Batman and Darth Vader teamed up with The Green Lantern to kill Smeagol, thus saving Bilbo from a dreadful death.
I’ve mentioned before that The Boy is a sponge and literally soaks up everything he sees and hears. This child repeats EVERYTHING he hears or even thinks he has heard. He is VERY verbal with a huge vocabulary (of which he knows the meaning and proper use of every word), extremely sassy, and regularly loses his precious, carefully monitored television privileges, which he is deeply remorseful for, but not enough to remember to curb his lip when talking back to Mama (She Who Controls The TV.) Curbing his commentary is both time-consuming and all-important, as it has led to some trouble in social situations.
For the most part, Grandma’s role when babysitting is to gently but firmly remind The Boy that we show respect to everyone when we speak to them, and when he responds with verbal abuse, I respond by parking him in the corner for some quiet time. Grandma sets the timer on the stove for five minutes and we both rest our ears. When the timer goes off, we hug and make up our quarrel, OR he goes back to the corner to reflect on where he miscalculated and went wrong for just a while longer.
Oddly enough, The Boy doesn’t like tofu in his stirfry. Go Figure! And Grandma doesn’t do mac and cheese–what a tragedy! We did find something he would eat, and we agreed to disagree.
I have ten grandchildren and one great-grandchild. The Boy is the only one of my grandchildren that requires special handling, although the others are just as talented and amazing as he is. Unlike the others, this child can’t be left to his own devices, or mayhem WILL ensue. Because he requires more intense handling, I’ve had a lot of individual time with him that I’ve not had with the others.
I can honestly say he is not my favorite grandchild, because they are ALL so awesome and so individual that I could never have a favorite. They range in age from 23 years on down to to 5 months and fall into 3 batches. The great-granddaughter is 4 years old and is amazing to me–we’ve developed a special friendship bonding in Grandma’s kitchen.
In the first batch, the oldest is attending college full-time and raising her child as a single mother and doing exceedingly well at both jobs. She inspires me to do better at my own work. The next oldest is my ‘Fairy Goth-Daughter’, an artist and musician, who hooked me up with Rammstein and Appocalyptica. The third oldest is 20, an actress, and has found work in HBO documentaries and even a straight-to-video movie. She is also managing a fast-food restaurant to pay her bills, since acting pays as well as authoring does! (insert ‘lol’ here.)
The next age group ranges from 14 to 6 and their interests are still varying. Two want to write, one loves to draw and he is awesome at drawing any sort of car you would want. The other three don’t have any particular area of focus yet, but I see glimmers of artistic and musical ability in them all.
The littlest, at 5 months, is really into the cat and his dog. He tries to sing when you sing with him, which I find quite entertaining–it keeps grandma busy and out of trouble for hours.
But what I love about The Boy is his imagination. He let’s his imagination fly freely, and I can see the seeds that, with good direction, will grow into a filmmaker or author or scientist there. The Boy thinks WAY outside the box because it hasn’t occurred to him yet that there is a box!
It ’s my job, as The Grandma, to see that they ALL realize there are NO BOUNDARIES to what they can do or be. Success isn’t measured in how many toys and possessions you gain. It’s measured in your happiness quotient.
Are you happy? When you get home from earning your daily bread do you look forward to a chance to spend an hour or two at your real work? My happiness quotient is very high, and always has been, even when I was working as a hotel maid. Happiness is a state of mind you must deliberately cultivate.
When you get home, why not simply forget to turn on the TV? (Or as I like to think of it, the sedative-box.) What has it ever done for you besides offering mindnumbingly similar programs interspersed with commercials designed to make you feel you aren’t complete without the product they are hawking. Bored and discontent is not how I want to live, so I find myself reading and pursuing other hobbies in the evening.
Today, I am also looking up. Two asteroids, one imploding over Russia and one doing a close fly-by is quite enough entertainment for one day! For all my friends in Russia, I hope you were not affected by the event this morning!