Do you remember 7th grade?
I remember my greasy bangs, prank calls and notes to my two best friends signed in code, folded into triangles, and passed secretly in the locker-lined hallways of my small town Ohio jr. high. Seventh grade was also when I had my first crush -- on the boy who sat in front of me in English class. He had blue eyes, wavy sandy-brown hair, and such a mischievously melting smile that I didn't even mind that he repeatedly rummaged through my little khaki purse with the turtle ribbon trim. We never "went together" but we did swap pictures. (I slept with his under my pillow for probably a year, maybe longer.)
I'm remembering 7th grade right now because Abe is celebrating his 12th birthday today and my living room is completely overtaken by 11 and 12 year old boys sporting sillybandz and skate shoes. They spent the afternoon playing mini-golf and laser tag and then returned here for dinner and what is turning into a rousing game of dart tag in the middle of our small house. The furniture has been shoved to the corners of the room and they are smiling, yelling, pushing, laughing, chasing, joking, diving.
I can't help but wonder if the girls have noticed them yet.
And that makes me feel so darn old.