On Monday I read an article someone hung up at an office I was working in about young children and love interests. How it was very normal for the 5-7 set to "fall in love". The jargony mumbo jumbo talked about attachment and healthy separation coping mechanisms and transition objects/individuals and measurable brain waves and tiny bits of hormone secretions. The take home message was that it's totally reasonable and acceptable and healthy for a child to begin to "identify with" another child (and caretakers. see also: hot for teacher) in a way that makes them feel safe and happy and gives them a sense of belonging and squishy warm warm. I took home none of it, assuming that it pertained to other children. Certainly not mine.
On Tuesday Jacob sheepishly asked me if I knew who his most special favorite Valentine was.
I have no clue, I'm all out of guesses.
Bianca, mom. I think I might be in love with her. How do I know for sure?
Oh, right. Bianca. The one girl I never hear anything about. I hear everything all about the billion other children in the classroom, but never a peep about Bianca. I almost forgot about poor Bianca.
Jacob went on to say how beautiful she was. And funny and smart and caring and kind and he wishes he was 18 so they could get married but they are too young and he has no idea what he is going to to until then. And I told him that she is very lucky to have him love her and she must be wonderful if he picked her out of all the girls in the whole wide world to fall in love with.
There's just one problem, mom
She hates me. No matter what I do she just won't love me back.
Well, you have a lot of years between now and 18, maybe she'll come around.
Mom, is it true that girls tell boys they don't like them if they really do like them and maybe she really does like me?
Sometimes, but sometimes girls tell boys they don't like them because they really don't like them so you have to respect her words until she says otherwise.
Mom, can you please tell me the secret for reading minds?
There's no such thing.
Then how come you always know what I'm thinking about? Man, I wish I could read this girl's mind. Girls would be so much easier if I could just read their minds instead of guessing all the time.
Then we talked about Mario Kart and Ninjago and ate pizza and did the other evening stuff we always do, just like old times.
This morning he kissed Bianca's Valentine on the way out the door.