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My Baby’s No Baby

It’s amazing how, as a parent, sometimes you (okay, ME) tend to not expect your youngest child to be able to do certain things at certain ages and stages. I think in my case, it’s not as much that I feel like the thirteen-year-old will “always be the baby” or anything like that; rather, I really think that it’s just my brain. Sometimes I get frustrated because he isn’t doing something or acting in a certain way…and then I remember that–DUH–maybe it’s just beyond his level and I should cut him a break.

He’s growing up, though. Sometimes I get an amazing glimpse at Maturation in Action; I got one last week, as a matter of fact. Remember his guitar? Well, right after summer camp he was able to purchase his amp, so it’s been “rock n’ roll city” around here. Unfortunately, last week he told me that he was having a problem with his humbucker. First of all, if you are not a guitar expert (just like me: NOT an expert, that is), take a moment to reflect on that word. Is that not one of the funniest words you’ve ever read? Say it. Humbucker.

I couldn’t keep it straight. I was calling it a Humdinger, a Humbucket, a HubbaBubba, and all kinds of other fun combinations. Once I got the eyeroll, I shut up and let him tell me what was wrong with it. It is working most of the time, but sometimes there is a problem.

Luckily, we bought the $20 insurance for the guitar. I said to him, “Okay, this shouldn’t be a problem. I’ll call the insurance company and see about getting this fixed. But you should stand nearby while I make the call, in case I need you to explain what’s wrong with the guitar (because I STILL don’t get it).”

He smiled and said, “I have a better idea. Why don’t I call the insurance company, and you stand nearby in case I need you?


As I watched him make the phone call, speaking slowly and clearly, answering questions, and writing down the confirmation number and other important information, I was amazed. He suddenly looked like a young man to me. When did that happen?

As it turns out, he will get a check for the purchase price (minus tax and the $20 for the insurance) mailed here, and he can get another guitar. He can keep the old one (yay! since it still mostly works!) and save up some more allowance to get an even better new guitar. Happy Day!

Over the weekend, I was in his room listening to him practice. He has come such a long way and is building quite a repertoire of songs, both through actually reading music sheets and also just trial and error (he’s REALLY good at “throwing a song together”!). I love that I can shout “Freebird!” and he can play some of it. Here’s a video for you to enjoy, costarring Roxie (who just returned from a long walk: that’s why her tongue is hanging nearly to the floor).

The song that I always request (he played it at the end) is called “Simple Gifts”. That pretty much sums it all up. I like to close my eyes and listen to that selection, and reflect on how lucky I am to have the simple things in life, and that all I ever need is already under my own roof.

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  • Kat August 18, 2008, 5:07 pm

    Wow he is growing up fast! I don’t even want to call our insurance company. Do you think he would mind :O)?

    I never even knew a guitar had a Humvee Humptydumpty, Humdinger, Humperdinck or Humbucker. Learn something new every day and YaY for a new guitar.

  • devilish southern belle August 18, 2008, 8:14 pm

    Bittersweet. It makes a mama proud, though, doesn’t it?

  • Melissa August 18, 2008, 9:28 pm

    Wow, he’s good. I could totally figure out what he was playing. Freebird is one of my all time favs!

    He’s got quite the start there!!

  • House of Jules August 18, 2008, 11:13 pm

    I took a bunch of pix of him playing when they were over here last wkend, so proud of him!

  • Mags August 19, 2008, 12:46 am

    Wow. He is amazing! I am very impressed…really great!

    I was at first going to comment on how I still think this way about my little sister who is 20. She’ll say a big adult word and I’ll do a double take-how does my little Lashetta know this word?!?!

    Funny….I just wish she still had those cute chubby cheeks she used to have.

  • Sarah Clapp August 19, 2008, 12:48 am

    I love, love love, that you requestd Freebird and that he plays it! WOW! He’s really good!

  • Dea August 19, 2008, 1:33 am

    Does he learn them by ear, or is he taking lessons??? He’s fantastic – I got a guitar over a year ago, and just cannot get it. And I was a really good organ player….so I’m frustrated! He’s awesome!!! 😀

    I love that he called….awww!

  • Dea August 19, 2008, 1:35 am

    I LOVE that song Simple Gifts too!!! I’m amazed at how beautiful it sounds on an electric!

  • Andie August 19, 2008, 1:49 am

    It makes me smile to think of you being so proud.

    and roxie… swoon!

  • Melisa August 19, 2008, 12:30 pm

    Kat: That’s what I told him, that I was going to have him call our health insurance company the next time I had something to dispute. 🙂

    Deanna: He’s very, very good at playing by ear! It never ceases to amaze me. Last year he played “Happy Birthday” for me on his clarinet without ever having looked at music sheets.

    Andie: Yep, very proud! And isn’t Roxie hilarious?

  • NukeDad August 20, 2008, 5:17 am

    He’s doing great! Nukeboy1 is on a similar track. He has his lesson tomorrow. He knows lots of AC/DC, Van Halen (Ain’t Talkin’ ‘Bout Love), Cream (I know!), some Boston and he’s working on “Crazy Train” by Ozzy. Thank God his amplifier doesn’t go to 11.

  • Don Mills Diva August 21, 2008, 2:40 pm

    Do you think he’ll let me sing backup in his band one day?

  • Colleen August 21, 2008, 4:42 pm

    Very cool…in all aspects. :O)

  • Melisa August 21, 2008, 9:24 pm

    Nukedad: Ha! Really? Because OUR amp does go to 11. LOL

    DMD: Of course! I bet he’d love it! You may have to sing lead though; not sure if he wants to do any singing.

    Colleen: I know! 🙂