Friday, June 21, 2013

Cuties Have Cooties

Justin and Joshua

Warm rays of sunshine were cast down from the sky as pollen filled the air on that beautiful spring afternoon.  I saw yellow buttercups in full bloom as I parked my white Escort station wagon in front of Justin’s school.  The cold, dreary days of winter were gone and spring was definitely in the air.
Joshua was three and a half years old and sat quietly in the back playing with his hot wheels cars in the seat beside him.  I was greeted by his babyish grin when I opened the back car door.  His big, brown eyes met mine as I took him out of the car and placed him on the pollen covered sidewalk.  I couldn’t help but smile when he slipped his small hand in mine, led me to the front door of the school and said, “Gotta get brudder.”

I opened one of the heavy blue double doors and we walked inside.  It slammed behind us and echoed through the school as we started down the maze of hallways that led to the back of the school where Justin’s class was found.  Joshua stopped several times along the way to look at the colorful, whimsical murals that were painted on the walls.

As we approached the classroom door, I paused to admire his class’ artwork that was so proudly displayed on the bulletin board.  I felt my heart fill with joy as I looked at all the colors swirled together on the white piece of paper with Justin’s name on it.  To me, it meant he did something he found difficult that most people do with the utmost of ease. 

I turned from the colorful artwork when I heard the class room door open.  Justin’s teacher stepped into the hall and carefully closed the door behind her.  Jennifer brushed the blonde hair from her eyes.  She placed one hand on my arm and said, “I just have to tell you what Justin did today.  He was just so sweet.”  She then placed one hand over her heart and began, “During recess, Justin walked up to a group of girls and told them they were cuties!”  Not my boy, I thought.  Not flirting with little girls already at the tender age of seven.  Jennifer thought it was the most precious thing as she continued to give me details about the event.  I had to admit… was cute.

We eased into the classroom and I found Justin on the playmat dancing to children’s songs playing on the portable CD player that had been placed on a wooden table.  His small, frail body awkwardly moved to the music as he tried to snap his thin, little fingers.  His jean shorts revealed the braces he wore that came up to his knees.  He turned around as he danced to the music and I caught a glimpse of his angelic face.

Jennifer told him to get his book bag, but he was in his own little world and continued to dance.  She walked closer to him, clapped her hands and in a sterner voice told him again to get his book bag.  Justin clumsily walked over to his cubby and retrieved his Spider-Man book bag while he said “Time go.  Time go.”  He slowly made his way to where Joshua and I stood as his classmates told him goodbye.

We made our way back to the car and as I placed the boys in their seats, I asked Justin about the little girls he spoke to at recess.  “So, I heard you told some girls they were cuties.” I said as I buckled his seat belt.  Justin giggled and gave me a big smile.  His two front permanent teeth looked like they were too big for his little head and I couldn’t help but think he looked like Bugs Bunny when he smiled.  I laughed, told him he was silly and closed the back door.

When I opened the driver door and sat in the seat, I heard Justin say loudly “Key-oooooties!”  Then he and Joshua laughed like it was the funniest thing they’d ever heard.  “I know, I know.” I said.  “You think those girls were cuties.”  “No! No!” Justin exclaimed adamantly.  “Key-oooties!”  As I listened to the laughter bellowing from the back seat, it finally hit me like a bolt of lightning.  “Justin” I said. “Did you say those little girls were cuties or did you tell them they had cooties?!”  He glanced at me with a mischievous look on his sweet little face and said, “Yeah! Yeah!  Key-oooooties!”

It was that moment I realized I was still the only “girl” in my son’s life…..probably the only “girl” he could think of that didn’t have “cooties”.  As for Justin’s teacher, she still believes to this day that Justin told those girls they were “cuties”. 

Thanks for reading,
Angela :)


  1. Angela!!!! LOL! Thank you for sharing this precious moment! Aren't kids hilarious!

  2. They are so hilarious and many times without meaning to be. :)

  3. Very cute! I love those bolts of understanding when you finally "get" the joke! Found you from Love that Max and I am going to follow you now because I think I might enjoy hearing more about your boys!