my boy is 12!

Monday was Pi Day, 3/14, or 3.14, or more accurately, 3.14159265359.

It was also the day I had to catch up on math homework with my son Jack as he’s behind assignments since missing school because of two (!) concussions.

Instead of hounding down on him that there was more unfinished work than I realized, I decided to make it FUN.

I’m a mom who wants him to be on top of it all, but I’m also writing a book about play, so if I couldn’t shift to playfulness in that moment, how could I convince others to do the same?

So we ate pie and talked about Pi (a number that had nothing to do with his algebra assignments). We tried to make it fun.

Yes, even math can become a game to play. And Jack finished his work with little resistance. Or at least less than he would have had I been beating down on him with shame-filled reprimands or questions I know the answers to.

In the end, it’s hard being 11.

But wait… today he’s turning 12!

I think that in the back of my mind on Pi Day, 3/14, I was also fast-forwarding to this day, his birthday, 3/17.

I was feeling slayed that this is his last non-teenage year.

I have two teenagers, and I know how quickly it all flies.

So as I worked with him on Monday, I thought, do I really want to argue about something that can be solved with grace and understanding instead?

Twelve is an interesting age. Eleven was electric, but 12 is when kids feel the need to belong, “crushes” develop, and acceptance by friends becomes super important.

It’s when miscommunication increases too. For example, when the parent of a 12-year-old is thinking, “Wait, why is my child wearing that outfit?” I often wonder if the child is thinking, “Man, I hope I look good for my friends.”

I actually don’t know what they’re thinking, but I promise they are not thinking about math.

So I will celebrate my 12-year old boy today (yes, he’s still a boy!) with a whole lotta love knowing he’s growing up way too fast.

I will also shower him with the shamrocks and leprechauns that remind him of his Irish heritage, and the Irish grandfather he was named after, Dr. Jack Q (along with his other Nonno, James).

I’ll keep honoring Jack’s St. Patrick’s Day-Birthday theme while I still can, at least until he’s older and tries to do a keg stand at an Irish bar to celebrate.

Until then, we will be eating cake (or maybe pie?) for breakfast and splurging on Lucky Charms for dinner.

After all, you’re only 12 once!

With fierce love,

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