Well, my teenager acted like a teenager tonight for the first real time. I took all the kids (except for Conor, who stayed home with Dad) to the Spring Concert of the Foothill Women's Chorus at the church tonight. They were performing the Vivaldi Gloria, and there were some other smaller musical performances as well, including a cello orchestra that about knocked my socks off. Most of the cellists were under the age of 14 and have been playing since they were teeny-tiny. It was incredible. One of the perks of living in the Los Angeles area is the abundance of amazing talent we have in our wards and stakes.
Anyway, with promises of refreshments to follow, I had the kids get back into Sunday clothes at 6:30 to go to the Stake Center. Lyndsay called her friend Katie to come with us, so her mom dropped her off and she drove up with us. As we're walking up to the building, Lyns, (who acts more than a shade differently when her teenage friends are around) asks if she and Katie can sit by themselves somewhere else in the chapel.
"You don't want to sit with us? With me?"
(now she adds her cutesy little 'I'm so innocent' thing to her voice, and tilts her head just so.) And I repeat, "No. We sit with our families. What, do I embarrass you or something, cause I'm pretty darn cool."
"No, Mom, it's not that."
"The boys, then? Is it the boys? Just sit on the other side of me from the boys."
I stop walking now, and turn around to face her. "I only have so many years of sitting with you left. You will sit with me, and you will love it." I start to resume walking, and then throw over my shoulder, "Besides, children who don't want to sit with their parents are children who have something naughty up their sleeves. I remember. I was a child once." And I catch her eye for just a second with a little wink in her direction.
After we're seated, with the boys separated on either sides of the bench, Lyns leans over to me. She has no choice but to let the cat out of the bag now that her plan has been foiled. "Um, Mom? Ethan's going to be here in just a few minutes to sit with us, okay? His mom is dropping him off. Katie texted him from the car and told him to come."
Oh, I see. The Truth comes out.
Well, you gotta get up pretty early, my darling daughter. Pretty early, indeed.
When Ethan arrived, I greeted him, and sat his 15 year old self right down next to me, several bodies away from my not-even-14 year-old Lyndsay. I was glad he was there. While we waited for the music to begin I taught him to identify all the flowers in the floral bouquets, all the instruments in the orchestra, that Vivaldi's first name was Antonio, and how to translate some of the Latin titles of the pieces being performed. After all, I knew he must have been interested in classical music to have his mom drive him all the way down to the Stake Center on a moment's notice.
I did, however, let him eat a cookie next to Lyndsay and Katie. Wanna know what's even funnier than watching self-conscious teens eating in front of each other? Watching self-conscious teens with braces eating in front of each other! A good time for all. And some great music with a little culture to boot!