My 7-year-old, Tres, is like most 7 year olds when it comes to ending their written sentences. He doesn’t do it. Maybe there are 7 year olds in existence who are punctuation nazis but I remember my other two demonstrating the exact same rebellion against the question mark, the exclamation mark and the period. Each day his take home papers contain his teachers corrections and the 1/2 points subtracted for the missing punctuation. While I was stressing the importance (bribery is normally my parenting method of choice) and the necessity of ending sentences, we came to the period and I paused.
Humph, the period. So small. So boring compared to the other ending marks yet so powerful. So final. Period.
While I was pondering the mass and depth of the period (wearing my deep in thought, blank expression no doubt) Mr. Pavlov announced that we were going to the mall. Tres took advantage of my blank expression, which wouldn’t remain blank for too long (Mr. Pavlov despises the mall) and the mall announcement to bolt from the punctuation prison I held him in. At least my prison serves chocolate (bribery).
Once at the mall Mr. Pavlov grabbed his mini-me (Dos) and informed us that they were going to Dicks. Period. I opened my mouth to protest but they were gone.
Uno, looked first at me, then at Tres and said through her chuckles “have fun with that cuz I’m going to shop.” Period. I opened my mouth to beg for mercy but she was gone.
Tres was oblivious to the very obvious ditching that was occurring as he was in mall crack mode. Period.
He was like the energizer bunny fueled by a nuclear power plant. His eyes were darting, his mouth was open…wide, and he was forming words faster that my normally quick communication center could process. He skipped, danced, sang, ran, touched (a lot), begged (for everything) and was enjoying the mall heaven he found himself in. I smiled and thought…He is his mother’s son…and considering the brief affair I had with the male (god) Abercrombie mall clerk who likely sired him probably didn’t hurt either. Whoa, where did that come from? Sounds believable huh? Not to worry, he is (the humanly hot) Mr. Pavlov’s all the way. Period. Period. Period…..
I really have to stop reading all of those deep, entangled, relationshipinal novels.
Ok. Wow. Too much mall crack. Let’s erase (the total greek god) male Abercrombie (have you seen those Abercrombie adds?!?) figment of my imagination and get back to watching Tres.
While observing him in his mall splendor, I suddenly forgot about the murder I planned to carry out on certain members of our family. Then the inevitable happened. He grabbed his crotch and began the perfectly choreographed maneuvers of the pee dance. It seemed as if the massive mall beverage he chugged during our pass through the food court needed to make an exit.
Truth be told, my Pepsi was beating on the sphincter of my bladder too so I found us a bathroom. A women’s bathroom. The men’s bathroom was all the way on the other side of the store and I was not about to have my vulnerable, mall loving, 7-year-old enter that dark and dangerous place alone. There are sick penis whacker offers out there! Period. I read about it and the disgusting, deranged event is forever seared in black and white print (with my own visual images) in my brain!
It wouldn’t be the first time I dragged him into the women’s bathroom with me. He knew the drill. Or so I thought. The bathroom looked like a sardine can packed with women (mostly elderly) doing the adult version of the pee dance. Finally, our turn came. I sent him into the stall beside me. He did his business like a typical male and beat my squat pants down. He exited the stall, washed his hands and stood along the wall. Perfect. This is going great! I thought. Then I heard these words
Mom, I gotta get out of here because it smells really bad like old lady perfume and it is burning out my eyes!
After telling him to remain put, Period, I inwardly apologized to the several elderly women in the stalls adjoining mine for his bluntness but couldn’t help but agree. He did have a valid olfactory point and my sinuses were in an uproar too.
Then he belted,
Hey Mom, did you start your period?!”
I was speechless. Silence fell upon the entire bathroom minus a few shocked inhalation gasps. Toilets ceased to flush. Toilet paper failed to rattle from their dispensers. And I was processing how best to respond, I mean…
Did he just ask THAT?!? But all doubts were erased when he repeated (much louder this time)
MOM, I saaaid did you start your period?!? Because I think I see some….
Whoa, I had heard enough! That did it! I coughed loudly, flushed my toilet multiple times and exited my stall hoping to the living God of heaven to exit that place as quickly as I could.
I shot him a look that spoke volumes. The ‘shut up you verbose kid’ kind and even thought about forgoing hand washing in order to exit the face reddening situation 20 seconds faster. But I decided against leaving the germs undisturbed on my hands because he would surely call me out on my filthiness. And it’s just gross.
Once on the outside I informed him that it was not a good idea to question me about my female body functions in such a highly populated and public place.
He shrugged and replied,
Well I thought that the women’s bathroom would be the place to talk about it! Periods belong in a sentence and periods belong in bathrooms.
For the second time that day I was speechless. Period.