Thursday, January 26, 2012

What to do when company comes.......

Its been almost a month since our last post and much has happened in our family.  The new year has brought a fresh perspective on life and raising our kids.  While much of our blogging has been therapeutic for us, i.e., you got to do something with all this weirdness!, it has also tended to focus on our struggles.  Today, though, we want to blog about the lighter side.  Perhaps it is indicative of progress that we are beginning to get in touch with the humor again or perhaps it is a form of denial, where we are simply ignoring things to have a moment of laughter...after all, it is good for what ails you!

Recently, Karen caught a segment of conversation between Jeffrey, age 12, and the 3 younger boys.  In the conversation, Jeffrey was providing some sage advice regarding family etiquette, based on his years of experience.

"Look guys, you should never show off when company comes. Don't go getting all your toys and showing them off. Always let the company start the conversation........" 

At this point, Jeffrey has something of an ADHD moment and  begins to digress into conversation regarding some unspoken company behaviors that have obviously bothered the poor child for quite some time.

"Of course, When they start the conversation, it always starts the same way......they always ask you what grade you're in!  Why do they do that?  Why is the first question out of their mouth always 'what grade are you in?'!  Are you kidding me?  Is that the best ice breaker you can come up with?! Seriously! Like a kid wants to talk about school?!" 

By now, Jeffrey has obviously left his role as big brother and role model.  He is now in full give-me-a-break mode, hoping that somehow he can alter centuries-long tradition that has guided the socialization of the young in North American families for time ad infinitum!

"Why do they never say something like, 'is that a new Kinnect?!' or 'what games go with your Wii?!'  Jeffrey continues with a new found mixture of pleading, drama, and focus usually reserved for closing arguments in a court of law.  "But noooo!  They've got to always start out with, 'what grade are you in?!'"
By this time Karen is laughing and wondering where all this is coming from and the 3 younger boys have joined Jeffrey's brief tirade with lots of energy but not the foggiest idea what they are protesting!
One could say that Oppositional-defiant behavior has many expressions and is certainly alive and kicking in the Thomas household.  But then I guess trying to form a family unit from scratch and the stresses that go along with the task has all kinds of way of oozing out of a human being.  In the case of one 12 year old, it must have seemed easier to take a shot at tradition than to try to teach it! 

As we say here in the south, Bless his heart!  Until we talk again...