He shows me how to make grilled cheese the correct way. "You add oil to the pan, Mom." He is just back from camp, he knows better than I. "That's what you're doing wrong." I am not convinced. "Well, from now on, let me make my own." And he's gone. He's a computer whiz, an expert on grilled cheese. He needs a shower. He reads voraciously. He's not sure he believes in God. He's finding his way through a treacherous landscape -- being 13.

Liz Myhill

Silver Spring

My 12-year-old daughter had been bugging me for months for a new lacrosse stick. Eventually I caved, and we went to buy one. With my daughter nervously standing by, for 20 minutes I quizzed the store manager about the technical capabilities of the models on display, trying to remember what I valued in a stick 25 years ago during my college playing days. "So, kiddo," I asked, confident that we had learned all we could about women's lacrosse sticks, "which one is it?" "I'll take the pink one with the pretty lime green strings," she replied.

John Hewko


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