December 28, 2012

Twelve years old

Biker Boy’s birthday comes right after Christmas: this was his first birthday since he’s been in foster care. A storm dumped a couple feet of snow on our region this week, but the plows have been out in full force, and the roads were clear as I drove to the town where he's staying.

We went for pizza, of course: it’s our tradition. Then I took him to the store to pick out a birthday present, and we came back to my house for the rest of the day.

We didn’t really do anything special. We built a fire in the fireplace. We played with the remote control car he’s chosen for his birthday present. We went outside with shovels to clear away the snow the plows had pushed into the driveway. Red-haired Niece and Blonde Niece stopped by to borrow some snowshoes on their way to Pretty Colour Lakes so we talked to them for a few minutes. I had a couple of stitches in my arm that needed to come out today, and Biker Boy watched, fascinated, while Boy-in-Black took them out with scissors and tweezers.

Biker Boy had a new iPod Touch that someone (his foster parents, I'm assuming) had given him for Christmas, and he was eager to figure out how to use it. He gets frustrated easily with technology, but Shaggy Hair Boy came to his rescue and patiently helped him transfer music. That’s when I figured out that we could use the little device for video chatting.

It took us awhile to set up his account, but soon we had it in place. To practice, he went upstairs and I called him from my computer. Sure enough, his face appeared on my screen. “This is awesome,” he said. “I can see you! I can see the Christmas tree!” He was talking so loud that I could have heard him even without the computer.

It was getting dark when I drove him home. Lights were going on in the farmhouses that we passed. The pine trees held big curves of white. Biker Boy held the GPS in his hands, even though I assured him I know the way by now; he’s fascinated with the device.

I felt sad, like I usually do, after I dropped him off, but this time my drive home was interrupted three times by phone calls from him. “Are you home yet?” he kept asking, “I want to Skype with you!”

Once I was back in my living room, I opened my laptop, and soon his face appeared, grinning. “I can see you!” he called out. He began panning the iPod around the room to give me a tour. “Look! Here’s the television! Here’s a chair!”

I’m old enough — and he’s young enough — to be excited by the technology. It’s not the same as having him right across the street, but it will be a nice way to keep in touch while his uncertain future gets sorted out.

13 comments:

patrick said...

I read this with a big smile on my face. With wet eyes to boot.

Elaine said...

Great news!

Mary Stebbins Taitt said...

What a hoot. I'm glad he has you as a stabilizing factor in his life!!!

robin andrea said...

Such a great use of technology! I'm so happy for you and Biker Boy.

Digger said...

This is An Awesomest Thing.

Sandy said...

Aw, that's wonderful.

Sylvain said...

brilliant !!

susan said...

Happy birthday, biker boy. And three cheers for skype.

liz said...

What Patrick said. Yes. Exactly what Patrick said.

Nik said...

Happy New Year to you. You deserve it. You make me believe in the good of the world.

jo(e) said...

Nik: Aw, thanks. Happy New Year to you.

Amy+ said...

What a Blessing you must be to BB.

Kyla said...

That is awesome!