boys, boys, boys

Xander’s soccer game this morning featured the cutest, nicest teenage boys as referees. Nearly identical in their matching yellow shirts and navy shorts they ran up and down the field making calls, watching the clock and blowing their trusty whistles.

Our league has strict rules against heckling refs, but I couldn’t resist speaking up when one called a “hands” violation on Xander, “You’re such a mean referee!” Ben looked over and flashed a grin; Stefan gave me a quick salute.

Xander played with his usual fierce determination but I enjoyed watching Ben and Stefan referee as much as the thrill of seeing X-man work the soccer field. They worked together so smoothly and made level-headed confident calls. “These are my boys.” I repeated over and over to myself. “These are my boys.”

The game ended in a last-minute victory for Xander’s team and the four of us gathered on the soccer field to laugh and tease. It was a golden moment.

Parting reluctantly I said, “I guess you have another game. I’ll take Xander home.”

“We’re done!” Ben replied, “We didn’t want to miss General Conference so we traded for the early game. Come home with us Xanderman– we have the party car!”

I watched them load into Ben’s Audi(a gem Grandpa Fritz found at a police auction) and drove alone behind them. It was surreal watching them laugh and joke and wave at me every few minutes as they independently made their way home. Could I possibly be the mother of all these PEOPLE?

The stages of their life pass seamlessly on one top of the other, yet occasionally I stop myself and think, “Wasn’t Ben just in first grade? And just before that didn’t we spend long afternoons at the park when Ben and Stefan were both toddlers? How could I be a mother to teenagers when I still feel so much like a teenager myself?”


In other news: Hans’ team had a spectacular victory. Gabe’s team lost but the post-game donuts compensated for the defeat. I was able to take some fun photos of our cute neighbor and Stefan nailed his Bach Concerto at his violin recital this afternoon– it was gorgeous.

Although we did listen to/watch all of conference today I found myself distracted nearly every moment. It’s so hard to sit down on a Saturday and really LISTEN. I’ll catch it in the reruns.

April 3, 2008
April 7, 2008



  1. Melinda

    April 6, 2008

    I’m in tears that your Ben actually didn’t want to miss conference. In one of my most favorite classic movies there is a song that says “You must have done something good” (I’ll let you guess the movie). But it’s true, you must be doing something right with these stalwart boys. Oh great now that song is stuck in my head.

  2. Michelle

    April 6, 2008

    Uh oh, I’m afraid I’m sounding like a shameless braggart again. I’m just trying to balance my frustrations with gratitude for the good times.

    And I am of course dedicated to my personal, worldwide crusade to prove that teenagers are WONDERFUL!

  3. Andrea

    April 7, 2008

    You are such a good mom, Michelle. You have got to give yourself more credit. Amazing kids come from amazing parents. Seriously. :0) I hope my boys turn out just like yours someday.

  4. Jan Russell

    April 8, 2008

    Okay, I’m in tears too – because our babies turn into PEOPLE entirely too fast! I’m glad you had such a great morning on the soccer field with your boys!

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