Every Monday I drive Davey to a nearby town
for a jazz piano lesson with the coolest teacher ever. His teacher
doesn't try to be cool, couldn't care if she's cool or not, doesn't
dress to be cool, but so IS. Davey and I love her to bits.
He's had a few piano teachers, and we've liked them all, and they've all liked us, but Louise is the first teacher who has shared Davey's love of jazz. Davey would love nothing more than a full day's lesson with Louise, though his love of lessons doesn't necessarily transfer to long hours of practise. As in he doesn't do long hours of practise - just in case you were wondering! He practises enough and I'm happy with that because he practises because he enjoys it - he really gets into the 'fiddling around' aspect of Jazz.
I'm thrilled Davey enjoys music, not because I think he's going to make a mozza out of it (is 'mozza' a purely Aussie term? It means lots of money. Lots and lots and lots!), but because I think he's always going to need an outlet for his emotions. Sport takes care of his pent up energy, but music, well music soothes his soul. It expresses the inexpressible and Davey's the sort of kid who has stuff going on inside that needs an outlet to help him process stuff in a way that his electronic game playing doesn't!
So, every Monday afternoon Davey & I have an hour and a half in the car together. Without Em. I learn more about my son in that hour and a half than at any other time during the week. He actually tells me about his day, the things he liked about it, the things he hated. He tells me about other children at school and his teachers. Sometimes we have very serious conversations, sometimes I laugh until I cry, sometimes there is silence as we meander in our own thoughts.
At the end of last year Em suddenly twigged that we really enjoyed these Monday afternoon car trips and felt as though she was missing out, and actually said "You two have adventures on Mondays don't you?" in an almost accusing manner. It was as though the possibility that Davey and I could have fun without her was a totally new thought!
Not long after that, Em concocted an excuse to come with us and accompanied us on our little Monday music adventure. Davey didn't like it and was quieter than usual during the drive. Rather than accompanying Seb into Louise's house, I stayed in the car chatting to Em, which was pleasant enough, then we drove home again. Usually we enjoy car time with the three of us, but somehow this driving time fell a little flat. Davey felt as though Em was trying to take over his Mum time and Em was struggling to see what Davey & I found so enjoyable - Mum's task of interminable waiting didn't seem to have any appeal to her at all! I usually use my waiting time to learn Spanish, but having Em with me meant that I put that aside, so I was feeling a little cheated too.
Em didn't ask to accompany us the next week and Davey & I had our usual companionable time together, with Davey commenting that he liked it much better without Em. As much as my teens like each other these days, it seems they like to have time with Mum when they don't have to share me.
Louise is surprised we're happy to travel so far to her each week, but I think if Davey gave up music lessons, we just might have to drive to her town for a milkshake every Monday afternoon just for the the mother son bonding time!