Susan's beloved Cousin Lisa was not a fan of Susan's previous post, she advised Susan via text that reading about her pantry was boring and suggested a more weighty topic, to share the conversations Susan is having with her son as he gets ready to leave for sleep away college.

Susan would characterize her son as being under communicative. From at least age twelve he has maintained a steadfast creedo of non disclosure, routinely employing the effective 'I don't know' blow-off when asked about anything. He provides one word answers and admonishes her with 'I told you already' if she asks the same thing twice which she often does because her memory is afflicted with advancing decrepitude. Since that time, if she wanted to squeeze from him the teeniest little drop of personal information Susan would have to begin plotting weeks in advance. She was most successful when he was tired, but even then she would have to be very stealth lest he figure out that they were talking.

Unemployment has opened up Susan's availability around the house and a happy side benefit has been the increased number of conversations with both her children on a variety of topics.

The other evening Susan's son described for her, in punishing detail, the plot line of the new Planet of the Apes movie, even though she gave every indication that she was disinterested. Of late he's been more forthcoming with information about social events he's attended, including but not limited to; who was there, what they were doing and if they were drinking. When asked, he'll oblige her with a brief synopsis of that day's goings on at his part time camp counseling gig. 

Susan has also been riding shot gun while he practices his driving giving her the opportunity to sneak in more conversation. They've discussed music, which of his friends' parents he connects with, the differences in each of his gym workouts, how he plans to use his summer earnings, what he thinks of his sister and father and his standard inquiry about what Susan is preparing for dinner.

Susan doesn't chat like best friends with either of her children because they do not allow her to do so. What she offers them, and what she believes they value, is her interest in their lives and her largely undivided attention.

Butt, who nose.

1 comment:

Meg at the Members Lounge said...

Susan, I think you have struck a fine balance of conversation with those teenagers. Never be their friend, be their parent.