Sunday, December 03, 2006

Hitting the Hard Stuff

My very bestest best friend Pam is pregnant. I'm giddily thrilled for her, because this is her first (and she says only) child, after nearly sixteen years of marriage. She's pretty giddy herself. Yesterday, we went shopping for maternity clothes (which are amazingly stylish compared to what was available when I had my babies *ahem* years ago). On the drive to the mall, Pam laughed and told me she was worrying about "crazy stuff."

"Like what?" I asked.

Like she's afraid the baby will date the wrong person. She thinks she should be more worried about the right preschool right now.

I laughed, because I'm having the same fears, and my "baby" isn't even in his teens yet. However, as he grows closer, I'm dealing with stuff that suddenly makes two A.M. feedings look like a walk in the park.

Stuff like helping him define what is and what is not a healthy friendship. I want him to know that manipulation is not okay, that it's okay to walk away when a "friend" becomes poisonous. I know it's just a fifth grade friendship, but I don't want that elementary friendship to set the tone for high school dating, if that makes sense.

Six more years and Pam will be sending her baby to kindergarten, which she has already dubbed "the hard stuff." She's right. It is. Raising a child is the hard stuff defined.

But I can't wait for her to realize that it's also the best stuff.

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