We are midway through another “normal” school week of family life, online classes, and writing, topped off with a healthy (or unhealthy) dose of tribal politics, depending on your tolerance level. Today was one of those days where we just had cereal for dinner. It was all we could do. It was a fancy paring of cheerios (naturally gluten free), topped with a little granola and blue berries and a splash of almond milk. I’ve done so much worse than that for dinner solutions.
But things are looking up: the seeds from the Cherokee Seed Bank came in the mail yesterday and the tree frogs are singing oustside tonight. Seasons of change. The excitement of Spring. I’ve never grown Long Greasy Beans, but there are detailed instructions and I look forward to it. Check it out next season, if interested. The deadline to ask for some seeds this season has passed.
There’s something else happening around here in these inevitable seasons of change: I’ve got a 7th grade boy in full bloom. Our days are filled with lots of questions and the sound of the rapid voice changes, the pimples, the braces, the akwardness. It makes me think of something very worthy of post-COVID research across all demographics.
What happens if the 12-18 months of mostly COVID isolation, coincides perfectly with puberty? Is that a bad thing? Imagine your most painful puberty weirdness. Starting your period at school. Getting aroused during class. The body comparisons. The insecurity. The mean girls. The mean boys. The mean persons.
Instead of being around a bunch of mean kids, what if you were just chilling at home with your folks, doing online classes and playing video games remotely with your friends for that whole year? You then fast forward to the return of normal life. The sun shines again, things go back to “normal” but only after your body has already gone through the toughest part of the changes. And you have a booming new grown-up voice and a different body composition when it’s time to re-emerge to the 8th grade.
My son jokes that he’ll stroll into where-ever, take a cue from the Bee Movie and say in his new deep voice: “so, you like jazz?”
Personally, I think this kid has hit the lottery for puberty timing. But maybe it’s the complete opposite and this is the worse kind of puberty hell possible? Probably somewhere in between. What it means in our house is that we are talking about EVERYTHING. Every day. A play-by-play.
What’s appropriate, what’s not appropriate. But all in abstract with no peers around. It’s on my mind today as I think of my mental health, his mental health, and all of our wellness. My goodness, there is so much to unpack here. Including the Cherokee seeds.
Somebody should research/write about this stuff.