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Monday, March 12, 2012

Day 10: Childhood

This one sort of threw me for a loop because my childhood best friend, Kristie, emailed me and threatened that she should be included in the childhood blog.

As if a blog a day isn't pressure enough.

So I've decided to compare my childhood vs. the life of the boys.

I befriended Kristie during Kindergarten and I vividly remember feeling sorry for her because she had a broken arm. In my mind, I was doing her and her broken arm a favor by starting up a conversation. Looking back on the situation, I am pretty sure Kristie and her outgoing personality would have done just fine without my friendship. Regardless, our friendship blossomed and we became the best of friends from then on.

Sidenote: She is still a head taller than me with legs that make all women jealous.

We were the kind of friends that would play together for a couple of hours, then have a raging fight over the fact that one of us had spent too long playing the role of cashier, or the teacher, or the playtime du jour. This usually resulted in yelling and threats and:

I'M GOING HOME!
FINE!
FINE!

And then the next day, all was forgotten. I'd dial 288-9408 from my own personal phone line (oh yea!) and minutes later we were back playing the role of cashier and customer.

Kristie moved away in the eighth grade, but we've kept up with each other ever since and her family even came to visit in the summer of 2010. She's the kind of friend who you can go years without talking to, and then pick up right where you left off.

Her house was less than 100 yards away, but in a whole different neighborhood on the other side of the tracks (the good side). Most of my childhood memories include Kristie and I can't help but wish we lived closer when I think back on them.

A few of my memories:

Tying a rope around the back of a bike and pulling Kristie on a skateboard behind

Making up dance routines to the Stand By Me Soundtrack on the trampoline
(For illustration purposes, you should know that the trampoline resided in the front yard)

Scrounging up money so that we could perform custom fireworks shows

Lemonade stands

Pushing a rolling dumpster around and charging neighborhood kids $1 a ride + face painting
(think mobile face painting: HUGE market!)

Derrick Doll drill team practices

Nights at the baseball park cheering for Matt playing wall-ball with the other siblings

Making forts in the woods

Staying out until dark and being summoned back to the house by
my mom shouting my name from the porch
***

Oh how times have changed.

I don't think of myself as a helicopter parent, until I compare Hayden and Davis' childhood with my own.
They are so much less independent than Jeff and I were.

Our kids don't ride their bikes without us. They don't go to the park without us.
They don't even play in the front yard without us.

I don't know if it is because there are more bad guys in the world,
or because I am just paranoid.

I think (hope!) my kids will still have good memories...how could they not living in a family with four brothers? I plan to gradually let them gain their independence, but for now I will continue to follow them to the park 50 yards behind and yell LOOK BOTH WAYS as they cross the street.

I hope that one day they each find their "Kristie" to share their candy, toys, and childhood memories with.

Kristie and I in 1999, when she came into town for my wedding

Hayden and Kristie's son Jack, 2010
Can you tell which kid belongs to whom?

3 comments:

Mimi said...

So glad that you wrote about Kristie. What a good friend she is. I could envision all of those play times. I think I was probably a crazy mom, but times really are different now.

I love you!

Mom

Anonymous said...

McDuff,
Couldn't have talked about my legs better! Ha! I think it's been a while since you've seen them! I better not let my mom read this post. I think she'd still freak out that we were hanging out in the woods. You forgot to mention walking up to the magic store and *driving* to H&M. And, I think people were freaky back then too. Remember the trucker that pulled up along side us at the movies! Wish we lived closer too. I like to imagine us not fighting on a 2 hour rotation anymore. Miss you always!

Mica said...

My twin! It really is like looking in a mirror.

Your trampoline was is the front yard. Interesting.