Wednesday, September 2

Did you know?

I have the world's greatest teenage boy.
I have lots of Little O stories, because kids that age are so funny, discovering the world.  I write more about the struggles with Big O because, well, he's hitting those hormonal, homework filled years. 
Last night, as I was scrambling for dinner before I took him to quinceanera practice, I asked Big O to walk his sister next door to visit with Mrs. G.  He did NOT whine or complain or even heave a big sigh, he just paused as he walked out and asked me not to log him out, as he was chatting with one of his friends on MySpace.  
He was back two minutes later, the Big G had sent him back to get some sidewalk chalk, because she wanted the three of them to play a game.  He STILL did not complain about getting roped into something else, just typed a quick note to his buddy and left with the chalk.
I walked over to get them, and the Big G had him playing a giant game of Hopscotch.
I love that he played this game without reservation, that he listens to the Big G respectfully even when he can't understand (because of her accent) quite what it is she's telling him.  
Sometimes  I wonder if I've got this parenting thing all wrong.  People say that they don't ask their older kids to watch their younger ones, because it's not THEIR job or responsiblity to raise their siblings, they should just be allowed to be a kid.   Guilt sets in because I ABSOLUTELY expect my boy to watch his sister.  He may or may not be paid for that.  At the same time, isn't that part of being a family? How do people teach their kids to be responsible if they never give them any responsibilities?    I freely acknowledge that spacing plays a big part in pulling this off... I listen to my friends groan about how their kids fight, and I think I spaced my kids juuuuust right.     
But watching him with the two girls last night, playing hopscotch when he'd rather be playing Call of Duty, holding his sister's hand as they walk around the corner, just because she's six and adores him, I just had to acknowledge that (setting aside all personal biases here) he is, in fact, the world's greatest teenage boy.