Many will be surprised to learn that our oldest son is a talker. Not those who knew him back when he was two; they can never forget his constant narration of his existence. "I'm walking; I'm walking; I'm running in a semi-flattened oval; I'm running in a semi-flattened oval." The rest of you may be surprised to learn it because these days, much like his father, mini-Mr. Wonderful must know you well and like you to want to talk around you.
My husband honestly is quiet. Mini-Mr. Wonderful, not really. In fact, for a lot of his life, I've worked on convincing him that not every observation of his needs to be expressed. His narration tends toward the TMI category. Perhaps he is not emotionally self-disclosing, but I know more about the status of every pore on his face than any mother needs or wants to know. That's just the tip of the TMI iceberg.
Mini-Mr. Wonderful is without guile and will honestly answer any question posed to him. While I don't want him to lie, I worry that this trait coupled his gentle soul will lead him to a world of hurt. I wonder if he will be taken advantage of. I wonder if his peers will laugh at him. You don't hear much these days about folks being earnest, but that is the adjective that best describes this son.
A friend took the older boys out to CiCi's pizza this weekend. The cashier pressed the boys on their decision to have just water. I guess this is not usual in the teen boy crowd. "Are you sure you don't want soda?"
She asked the wrong boy. If this kid had adopted any of his mother's training, he would have said simply "No, thank you."
Instead, what he said was, "We want to make sure we have enough money for a tip, so no thank you. We'll just have water."
I will pause here while you say, "Awww..." Showing that I too possess the TMI trait, I will admit my first thought upon hearing this was, "Crap. Why didn't I send him with more money?"
A few minutes later, the cashier brought the boys over soda cups and told them they were very polite kids and to go ahead and get sodas. My son told me this with a somewhat guilty look--I am sure his rule oriented being was uncomfortable with indulging in unpaid for soda--and he assured me that he and his brother thanked the cashier then and again when they left.
Sometimes, mothers see the downside of traits when they should be celebrating their positive implications.
Nice guys don't always finish last. Sometimes, they get free sodas.