|Finn, age 8 going on 15|
Me: OK. What's up?
Finn: It's about when I'm a teenager.
Finn: Well, I know that from about, like, I think around 15 or so, I won't like you anymore.
Me: Really? Why do you think that?
Finn: Well, from what I've heard, most teenagers don't really like their parents. They, like, think they're dumb and stuff.
Me: Hmm. Well, that may be true of some teenagers, but not all of them.
Finn: This is what I need to talk about with you. I don't want to not like you.
Me: Good. That would make me happy. But remember that parents have to discipline their kids, and sometimes kids -- especially teenagers -- don't appreciate being disciplined.
Finn: Like, grounded or no video games? Something like that?
Finn: I can handle that. But what I want is to still be friends with you. Forever.
Me: ... [blinking back tears] That would be really wonderful, sweetheart.
Finn: Because when I'm a teenager, I'm going to need my girlfriend to think you're nice. ... OK? ... Mom? ...
And just like that, I realized I would soon be replaced. Ouch, babe. But, such is life.
He's a great kid, a notion that was recently confirmed in glowing terms by his teacher. He's going to make someone very happy, later in life. But hopefully not too soon. He's mine, for the moment. I give thanks for my little buddy.