Surprising conversations happen regularly when children are involved.
Joseph, as we round the corner near the pizza joint: "Are we going to Little Caesars?"
Me: "Yes. I need to grab some stuff from Grandma's house and I figured we could just grab a pizza on the way."
Joseph (whining): "Why do we always go to the same old places? You know. Little Caesars. Wendys. Burger King."
Me: "Ummm, last night I got you guys Greek take out. Chicken souvlake. Lemon rice."
Joseph: "I know. I just... I just want to try something totally NEW."
Me (mumbling under my breath): "If you weren't so picky, maybe we could get fast food that didn't taste like cardboard....."
A minute later Joseph is apparently still processing this conversation. He had picked up on my somewhat testy, not very sympathetic, what-kind-of-entitled-bratty-kids-am-I-raising? tone of voice. The conversation continued.
Joseph: "Mom? I wish you could just have a day to relax."
Me: "Umm what? You mean so I'll be more relaxed and fun? Sorry I'm in a cranky mood. You know it's not your fault."
As I start to gear up for my bi-weekly "It's not your fault when Mom is in a bad mood. You can choose your emotions and so can I. Remember that nobody else can define the way you feel...." lecture, Joseph cuts me off. His voice sounds kind of unstable and I look in the rear view mirror to see tears welling up in his eyes.
Joseph: "No, Mom. It's just that I know how hard it is to raise three boys and I want you to be happy. Couldn't you go have a day for yourself like... like... like a SPA DAY?"
What? Where has he even heard the term "spa day"? And how did the entitled complainer turn into my favorite little sweetheart on the whole planet? Sometime in the last two minutes apparently.
Me: "Oh, sweetie, that's so nice but I don't need a spa day. I have lots of fun with you guys every day. You make me really happy!"
Joseph wouldn't let it go. He brought it up again later and I said that we have a nice whirlpool tub and he gives great foot massages, so what more could I want? His reply: "You know. MORE whirlpool tubs. And cucumbers! We need more cucumbers."
Man, I love my kids.