"Look, look, Mom . . . when I was in your belly, I was growing like this! And your belly was all big like this!" We took the opportunity to look back at some pregnancy pictures and he marveled that he was "in my belly."
* * * * *
Later in the evening, as I stole a piece of his macaroni and cheese, I asked him if he wanted more.
"No, Mom, my belly is fully."
I lifted his shirt, his little 7-year old belly curving out like they do. He puffed it out a little harder, as if to emphasize his point. I laughed - "Do you have a baby in your tummy?" I asked.
"No!" he laughed, and reached over to rub my belly. "You don't have a baby in your tummy anymore."
I laughed and said "No, Mommy's belly is flat now."
There was a pause. "Well, not really," he said matter-of-factly.
I stopped, unsure of how to interpret that or what an appropriate response to a 7-year old might be, short of a slap upside the head.
Like men tend to like to do, he continued, trying to dig himself out of the hole. "I'm not saying you're fat, Mom. I'm just saying your tummy is kind of bumpy and stuff. Like mine." He patted his belly proudly, extending it as far as he could.
I stared him down. He looked up and gave me his cheesiest smile. I thought about reminding him I was wearing a belt with a heavy buckle.
As I contemplated an appropriate punishment, I realized the best punishment would be to let it rest. In a few years, he'll be able to learn the hard way.
The same way we taught the rest of you when you tripped over your own lack of social filters.