So there we were, Ben and I, at a school science night. Because of its popularity, the organizers split the kids up into numerous groups to keep things flowing well. One little girl, who was in Ben's class last year, was in his group. Together with two other kids, they went from station to station doing hands-on experiments and learning about science.
Like most of the adults there, I did my part by following closely along, taking pictures and chatting with other parents. But I also had a chance to eavesdrop on the kids' discussions and conversations, something I don't get to do during the day. And let me tell you, that was a lot more educational for me than the demonstrations.
While Ben and his friends learned about things like CO2, water filters, yeast and dry ice, I learned that Ben is quite the charmer, and not just at home. For one thing, he managed to plant himself right next to the little girl in his group at every station. If there were no more chairs, he'd stand next to her. As we arrived at the 'make your own ice cream' demonstration, she was already seated. I got behind her chair to be able to take some good pictures, just as Ben slid into the seat next to her. This didn't surprise me. But what came out of his mouth, did.
"Hello, Isabelle," he said with great flourish, as if they hadn't seen each other in weeks.
And then his voice dropped, romance-movie-star style.
"We meet again."
It's so fascinating to see the different sides of our children, the people they become in various situations, and how the dynamics of their personalities change. Fascinating may not be the right word. Maybe 'stunning' is what I'm thinking.
Fortunately for me, the demonstration hadn't started yet, because after picking my jaw up off the floor, I doubled over laughing. Since I was probably the only person who'd heard him, besides Isabelle, everyone looking at me likely thought I was nuts.
"I may seem crazy," I wanted to turn to them and say, "but not nearly as crazy as I'll be when he's 15."
Because I have a strong feeling that, by then, I'll be crying.