I have two boys, ages eight and eleven, in third and sixth grade respectively. One thing I’ve noticed about my kids since they started school is that they’re a little different than their peers. Oh, I know every child is different, trust me. The differences simply between my two are staggering, and they’ve been raised together in the same house, with the same parents.
What I’m talking about is the tendency of my children to turn a discussion to something that most people consider inappropriate for a child. My older one seems to have outgrown this a bit, or perhaps has just grown wise to the fact that when talks about poisons or murder he gets the hairy eyeball from any adult within earshot (except, of course, me). But the younger one… he seems to delight in the uncomfortable silences that inevitably follow a child’s off-hand remark about the most effective way to destroy a brain. I’ve come to understand I have to just send an email to his teacher at the beginning of every school year explaining what I do or I risk quite a barrage of questions come parent-teacher conference day. “Um, Mrs. Hopeman, are you aware that your son knows the proper dosage of belladonna to incapacitate an adult?”
I took him to a yearly check-up not too long ago. Apparently, doctors are now supposed to ask the kids if they feel safe in their home, if they wear a bike helmet when they ride, and if there are guns. My son, unable to simply give the poor woman a yes or no answer, pointed at me and said, in his best conspirator’s voice, “You should see her Glock.”
The icing on my questionable parenting cake was just a couple weeks ago when I had to write a warning email to his teacher explaining that it was most definitely my fault that he used the word “cadaver” in each and every spelling sentence.
Yes, that’s my kid.