This week the boys had a couple of casting calls for a few commercials.
School's out and our summer schedule is free and easy. But I can't help worrying how much is too much.
Rationally, I know that a single, random week with two auditions during a long summer full of relaxation is not a big deal. Even if they get one of the jobs (probably not likely, but you never know) it would just be one or two more sessions. There's still weeks and weeks of wide open days for zoo trips and cartoons and sleeping in and friends and adventures.
But when we were waiting today for their turns, L definitely heaved a few sighs of boredom.* That's what got me worrying.
We have said from day one: We're not serious about it, this is for fun. We'll only do it so long as they like it, and we'll stop if that changes.
Nobody wants to be one of "those" pushy moms who neglects her kids' needs in her desperation to get them into the spotlight. If the kids didn't enjoy it, we wouldn't do it. End of story.
So the tricky part is: He loves it when it's his turn. He likes doing the "job" and seeing himself in the rare magazine or commercial. He likes the attention from the crew, the wardrobe changes and makeup, the whole experience. But he doesn't like waiting around for a long time before he gets his turn.
The most self-critical part of me says: He hates it. You're already one of those moms. You're horrible.
The less critical part says: Wait, he still likes modeling. He just doesn't like waiting around. Who does?
The more critical part accuses: He wouldn't have to wait if you didn't bring him to the casting. That's the point!
And the other part answers: But he wants to go. He's just bored, like he gets bored waiting at the bank or the grocery store. Being bored never hurt anyone- this just feels different because the modeling still seems too cool to be true. So it feels like there has to be a downside, and this must be it.
For today, I have consoled myself with the thought that despite my best effort as a parent, L has- in his less charming moments- actually complained about being bored while at home. So changing the location of his boredom from home to the studio probably doesn't register on the scale of my worst parenting mistakes.
And the truth is, that critical voice in my head isn't my own worries. It's the thing I worry someone else might think or say. And aren't I supposed to not care what other people say?
Instead of assuming that the answer is to stop the modeling full-stop, maybe I can think smaller and stop the boredom instead.
*M is always happy to have a long stretch of time to read, so no complaints from him.