My boy Nick is asleep on the couch. One instinct is to creep around and let him sleep. It’s 10:13 in the morning. My other instinct is to do what I normally do. Don’t I need to vacuum about now? Don’t I need to hammer something on the wall above the couch? Can I put the washer straight onto the spin cycle?
Nick is a teenager. He’s a boy. He’s a man. I never know which I will meet when we make eye contact. He’s tired. Imagine when you’ve broken something on your body and it’s working to heal itself how tired you become. I remember that when I had back surgery. It took me a year to feel normal again. Now, make your whole body do that. We don’t call it healing, but the process is the same. Great volumes of cells are being produced and packed onto different places in the body.
Yesterday, Nick looked at my china cabinet and said he thought he’d grown. He said he can’t look straight into the old curved glass and see his wavery reflection any more. He has to bend over to see himself.
Is it any wonder teenagers stand in front of the mirror in the bathroom for so long? Their bodies are changing. I have a friend whose children both went through a phase in which they had these huge brow ridges and the rest of their heads were like the beautiful children they’d always been. It was hideous, especially for my friend’s girl. I wonder if she stared at those brow ridges and wondered how she went from being so pretty to such a Neanderthal in such a short time? I hope she didn’t. I hope she was blind to it. She’s beautiful now. Oh, she still has that feature of a prominent brow, but she has an angular jaw and gorgeous cheek bones to match.
Nick is going through that now too. His ankles are huge manly things, but until recently, he still had his little boy toes, smaller than mine. His face is getting more angular. I looked at him the other day and thought that he really was quite handsome. Well, he is. He’s my boy and he’s handsome, especially when he grins and has that spark in his eyes and that one eyebrow is oh so slightly raised. I love that eyebrow, the one that has a natural arch in it.
Oh, he was born with that. One eyebrow is very even and normal. The other has always had a little Spock point to it. He will always have that, no matter how much he grows.
His mother may not be the only one who thinks him handsome when all his features have finished growing.
I guess I’ll let the poor boy sleep. If I don’t, his toes might never catch up with his ankles. I wouldn’t want to interfere with that. The spin cycle can wait.
Thank you for listening, jules