I was pulling weeds, and Em was sitting on the garden wall, watching, when she asked, "Mom, do you remember if you liked boys when you were my age?"
I stopped and thought about it. "I don't think so," I said. "I know I started liking boys by sixth grade, which is next year for you, but I was older than you...I was 12 within the first few months of sixth grade, and you will only have just turned 11 when you start sixth."
She digested, then said, "Sometimes my friends ask me which boy I like, but I really don't like any of them."
"That's FINE," I replied.
"Oh, I know," she said. "But C says I'm weird because I don't have a crush on anyone."
I start to do my usual "Well, C is talking out of her ass" speech (which doesn't actually include the word ass, but you get my drift), when she stops me. "She's just kidding, Mom."
"I know. But I'll tell you something, Em. Sometimes, when someone tells you something over and over, even if they're just kidding, you start to believe it. And I just want you to follow your own heart; I don't want you believing that there's anything wrong with you at all, even if your friends are telling you there is."
"Oh, trust me Mom," she said, waving dismissively. "I won't. I've been taught better than to ever believe anything like that."
Yes, I'm still grinning from that one this morning.