"Yeah, you are."
"No, I'm not."
"If you ever want to have screen time, you are going."
I had to do it. I had to play my highest parenting card to get Noah to his first school dance. He was hung up on the word -- dance. Even though Steve and I assured him he was not required to bust a move -- he wasn't convinced.
"I don't want to go!"
This wasn't the first time Noah rebelled over trying something new. It wouldn't be the last.
Over the years I've learned not to ask questions like, "Did you have a good time?" Because his brain likes to focus on less than perfect details so much so that his black and white thinking quickly turns everything dark. Instead, on the ride home I focused our conversation on a safe subject - party food.
"What kinds of snacks did you eat?"
"I don't know."
"I heard there was a chocolate fountain -- did you have some chocolate?"
"No, and it wasn't even that big."
"What do you mean?"
"I was expecting it to look like that," he said while pointing to the large fountain sitting outside the local police station.
(Darn it, I needed to steer this conversation elsewhere or he was going to start spiraling down into a dark pit. Before he could go further I said, "It looked like almost every student went."
"Yeah, I played Uno and Spin the Bottle."
"What? You played Spin the Bottle?"
"Like Spin the Bottle?...tonight?... at the dance?"
"Yeah...but I didn't do that kissy thing."
"What did you do?"
"I played Spin the Bottle Jr....I spun my water bottle and the first two it pointed to I would say they were getting married."
I think at that moment a few new gray hairs sprouted from my head.