Up until a few years ago I had only seen part of one Star Wars movie. I know. Gasp.
Since I’m a film narcoleptic by trade, I fell asleep in my one viewing, and I awoke to a scene where I was pretty convinced a llama had been light sabered open to be used as a cozy sleeping bag for the night.
Turns out I did not interpret that scene correctly at all. Fact. There are no llamas in Star Wars.
I remember my brother had a tiny Han Solo and Luke Skywalker action figures set.
But guess what. They were the same size as the dolls from my sister’s dollhouse…
So Luke and Han actually spent most of their time married to Betty homemaker and her sister Karen, and often they would come home after a long day at work to a nice pot of tea and home cooked spaghetti.
That was my Star Wars experience, before kids of my own.
As an adult, and after my fourth ultrasound of “I can’t actually tell you the gender right now, but you definitely won’t need to buy any new outfits for your new baby…” I chose to embrace the testosterone (and accompanying interests) that would be ever present in my home.
I decided to follow my boys as they excitedly blazed a trail through all things Star Wars.
I’ve since seen the movies and actually really enjoyed them. I’ve read dozens of varying kids books about those very same movies. I’ve built Lego sets and searched for missing light saber ends under my couch, A LOT.
I’ve watched the video game being played and I’ve learned terms like “Hoth, Sith, Rebel Alliance, and Jedi Master.” And I absolutely learned to pronounce AT-AT properly.
It does not rhyme with ‘cat cat’ like I originally thought.
And then I bought the sweater. A bejeweled one, thus perfectly fusing a thing that my boys love with a nice looking thing for Mom to wear.
When they first saw me wearing the sweater they slowly read the words across the front…. “You bought a Star Wars sweater Mom?”
Followed by their eyes lighting up.
Followed by, “That’s cool. I like it.”
I didn’t start reading it and wearing it and discussing it in the very first place because I loved it.
But I did love them.
And I want to be interested in the things that they find interesting. Because shared interests and caring about what your loved ones care about are sure fire relationship builders.
When these boys are bigger I want them to tell me all sorts of weird things about their lives.
So that means I need to invest in that future relationship now.
That’s why I eagerly delve into big old long conversations about why C3PO is head of cyborg human relations. Or why Anakin Skywalker just made a super bad life choice… or why Luke still had to get his chores done even when he really wanted to just go pick up power converters with his friends.
So I’ll pause and continue to genuinely engage in these conversations with my boys. It’s so important to never diminish the things that they find interesting.
The funny part is, my interests are evolving as I do so. I can see why they find these stories so fascinating.
Last night we were watching a brief ‘fast-foward through all the scary parts version until you’re way older’ of The Force Awakens. It thrilled my soul when my son was like, “That’s no ordinary spaceship they just stumbled upon, would you believe that’s the Millenium Falcon?!” He was just so excited. And then I was so excited to see him so excited.
Wearing that little Star Wars sweater serves two purposes. It keeps my arms from freezing and falling off, but it also serves as a reminder to my boys.
“Hey, Mom cares about the things we care about, and that’s pretty great.”