I’ve known that, one day, I would be replaced by another woman in my son’s life.  I didn’t dare imagine that it would be just before his fourth birthday.  But, alas, on Saturday night, as we went into Macy’s, Robbie told me that he needed to get a present for “Agigail”.  Justin and I were curious to see where this would go and followed Robbie as he carefully went from jewelry display to jewelry display.  Initially, he fingered a pearl necklace, claiming it would be perfect for his “girlfriend”.  Justin and I told Robbie that the necklace might be a little better for someone older, and he moved on to a cute pearl bracelet.  The price was decent (about $12 after all the coupons I had) but I figured Abigail wouldn’t get much use out of it.  We headed, for the first – and hopefully the last – time, to Justice.

Rob looked a little overwhelmed as he walked into the store, the only boy within twenty paces of the store.  However, he marched undaunted to the back of the store to start looking for bracelets.  We were all in this now; this was serious.  Justin immediately picked up an offensive sparkly pink unicorn attached to a delicate chain.  Robbie asked my opinion on a BFF bracelet combo, which I told him sent the wrong message.  And then, there it was.  A cute silver bracelet with an “A” charm and two little heart charms.  It was perfect.

Robbie smiled and said it was the right bracelet, and we all headed to the cashier.  He stopped us right there.  “No.  You wait here.  I’ll pay for this by myself.”  And off he went to patiently wait in line.  The picture he painted, my almost-four-year-old, gripping a $20 bill in one hand and the bracelet in the other.

As soon as it was his turn, Robbie handed the bracelet to the cashier and then pulled it back.  “Excuse me.  Do you have a box I can use for this?”  It was only when she assured him that she did that he went through with the transaction.

For the rest of the night, Robbie was concerned about giving his present.  All of a sudden, she was there.  At his birthday party.  He was in a panic, wanting to make sure I had the bracelet.  And she was too cute, wearing it for a minute and then giving it back to her dad before going back in the water (brave kid to give her the present in front of her dad).

I figured this was about the end of what we would hear about Robbie’s girlfriend, and today he was quiet as we headed off to get my classroom ready.  I asked Robbie if he was tired, and he said, “No.  I’m just really missing Agagail.”  Are you kidding me?  This seems a little dramatic.

We took a break from missing Robbie’s girlfriend for a few minutes as he dealt with the excitement of feeding the guidance counselor’s turtles, running through the freshly waxed halls, and eating a banana.  He busied himself with watching Dinosaur Train and coloring on my white board while I unpacked boxes.  A few minutes later, Robbie asked if I knew he had a girlfriend.  “Yes,” I replied, not sure where this was going.

Robbie pointed to his drawing.  “This is her.  This is Agagail.”

“She looks beautiful,” I replied, shelving stacks of books.

“Yeah.  She’s wearing her marrying dress,” Robbie explained, turning back to his art.  I watched him for a few minutes and then went back to my unpacking.  All of a sudden, I saw a little movement.  My child was kissing the picture he had drawn of his “girlfriend”.  I didn’t even know what to do with myself.

There were a few other moments during the day that Robbie talked about his beloved, proclaiming that he was, in fact, ready to get married.  I tried to explain to him that marriage was a big deal, a lifetime commitment that was, surely, at least twenty years in the future.  He was convinced and nothing I could say would change his mind.  Is this an indicator of things to come?  Am I destined to spend the next fourteen years searching for perfect presents for the true loves of his life?

As much as this possibility breaks my heart, I love that I have a little boy thoughtful enough to get a girl a present on his birthday, one who didn’t mind sorting through two jewelry departments to find the perfect one.  I love that he can think of a girl, even when it might not be the cool thing to do.  And I really hope it means he’s learning an important lesson from his dad: how to treat the woman he loves.  I am forever grateful that my son has a wonderful example of how to treat a woman.  Sure, he may act like he’s fifteen half (or more) of the time.  But he always puts me first (unless Sharknado is on) and treats me with love and respect.  So, if that’s what all of this means, I’m in.

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