Sometimes my kids just won’t stop talking.
We’ll be reading a book aloud when N’s eyes suddenly light up. Then he’ll start explaining how what we just read reminds him of this other thing, and this other thing is so fascinating because… and he’s off and running wherever his hyperactive mind takes him.
One the one hand, it’s adorable. I can practically see the neurons firing and the connections being made. And I know it’s great that he’s truly listening to what I’m reading and digesting it. But if left unchecked, his rhapsodies will go on and on for ten minutes or more, which is not appreciated when I’m reading to him and any (or all) of his siblings. R and K are not generally kind about it, and although I’ve tried to eliminate the phrase “shut up” from all our vocabularies, it tends to pop out when N digresses.
It’s usually K’s voice we hear: “Ugh! N! Shut up! We want to hear what Eema’s reading!”
Fast forward to our car, tonight. Mr. December had just finished telling N that since tomorrow is our last day of homeschool before a month’s vacation, he has to get up early and work hard (he’s been slacking off the last few days.) Apparently this triggered something for K, because she launched into a rant:
“Don’t you hate how they always do that at school? They advance so slowly at the beginning of the year, and then they slow down halfway through, and right at the end of the year they pile on the work!”
“Um, no,” Mr. December said, “I’ve never noticed that.”
“They totally do!” She continued, barely drawing breath, “It’s like, the first day of school you’re just sitting there doing a stupid word search and meeting the other kids in the class, even though you already know them because it’s the same kids every year, and why can’t they just get down to the hard work right away? It’s so annoying! It’s like they forgot that they wanted to get all this work in and so they have to cram it into the last month of school and it’s so hard and then there’s too much work and it’s crazy because they should have spread out the work all through the year instead of saving it up to make us miserable in June and –”
“Hey, K?” I interrupted, “You know how sometimes you get annoyed at N for going on and on about the same thing without saying anything new?”
“Yeah…” She nodded emphatically.
I waited. In three, two, one…
“Oh.” She said.
And there was silence. Blessed, blessed silence.