It's starting ...

Megan was by far my most difficult child, at least during the school years. It wasn't because she was a bratty kid who never listened and tested me at every turn. No, it's because she was so darn super-hyper sensitive. And that tested me at every turn.

Megan was crushed by the slightest of slights. Whether it was her new baby sister looking at her older sister 30 seconds longer than she looked at Megan, the new dog wanting to run around the yard instead of letting Megan scratch his belly, a teacher exclaiming over another child's artwork when Megan had worked so hard on her own, or a friend having another friend ... and actually talking to that friend in Megan's presence, she continually had a broken heart and collapsed in tears the moment it was safe (meaning no one but immediate family was around to witness the meltdown).

Because of the perceived potential for heart-crushing, Megan entered new situations cautiously. Joining in was not her forte. And when she did join in, it took a lot of thinking about it, a lot of internal preparation, and a lot of coaxing from her mom. Megan has a long list of extracurricular activities and accomplishments that highlighted her school years (and beyond), but man was it ever difficult getting her through those activities with her -- and my -- sanity intact.

Well guess what? Bubby has started to show some of the same tendencies. His heart's not crushed as easily as Megan's, but he takes a while to warm up to new situations, to venture forth, to join in.

"He's, well, timid," Megan told me the other day, after explaining a difficult time at an indoor play park.

Timid is not what Megan thought she'd be getting with a boy. In fact, I think (but I'm sure Megan would never admit it) that she wanted a boy so much more than she wanted a girl as her starter child because she knew the hell heartbreak that accompanies oversensitive girls.

But she has Bubby. Sweet, silly, happy Bubby, who's the fearless king of his castle, but outside the walls of that castle, he's hesitant about new places and faces. He needs time to fully vet them, to make sure all's safe and sound. Just like his mom, he needs a little coaxing.

Oh, and he needs to ensure that Mom is and will continue to be nearby.

I feel for Bubby, and I feel for Megan being so vexed by his being exactly like her timidity. I encourage her to let him take it slow, don't force him into the unknown, don't get angry. He'll come around.

But behind the words of encouragement, my mean-mom self is doing an internal happy dance and shouting, "Yes! YES! It's starting! That legendary curse of children exacting upon their moms the very same horrors the moms once caused for their mothers is finally starting to come true."

Payback is mine, all mine! Having a boy instead of a girl didn't release my distressing darling  daughter from the age-old curse. Yes!

There is some consolation for Megan, though. She's fortunate she won't have to deal with the increased insanity that comes with periods and PMS.

At least not with Bubby. But she best beware: She hails from a female-laden lineage, so I have no doubt there's a little girl in her future.

And to that I can only offer these words of encouragement: Be afraid, Megan. Be very afraid!

Today's question:

If you had the opportunity (or nerve) to apologize to your mom for just one thing you did while growing up, what would it be?

My answer: I'd apologize for not going back to pick up the muffler that fell off her old but oh-so-necessary car in the middle of traffic while I was driving it as a teen. I would have been too embarrassed to get it, so instead, I created more stress and financial worry for my already stressed and cash-strapped mama. I'm sorry, Mom!