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He’s about 17 kilos, 3 feet and wears clothes for people twice his age. My son is a big kid compared to his peers. Some say his nickname is ironic to his physique. In spite of his ‘big-ness’ he’s sweet, always gives me a kiss or a hug, looks at things with gentle eyes and very careful with his playmates.

Last Sunday we were at Toy Kingdom and browsing for new toys. It is routine for him to ride on this Little Tykes truck every chance he gets. A little boy, I believe around 2, was riding the truck when we arrived. This little boy went out of the truck when he saw a big motorized bike and wanted to ride that too. When Peewee saw that the truck was unoccupied, he immediately went it. The little boy saw that Peewee rode the truck, immediately ran to him and held Peewee in his shirt forcing Peewee out of the truck. When Peewee was out, this little boy began hitting him. Peewee didn’t fight back; he was confused then cried. I was so infuriated with the little boy that I wanted pick him up and throw him out of the store. I just yelled “Stop hitting Peewee, where in hell is your mother?!” Right there and then I wanted to hit the little boy. John carried Peewee out of the toy store crying.

If Peewee is a bully he can easily push that little boy and make that little boy sorry he let Peewee out of the truck. Peewee is bigger and taller than the little boy. One push from Peewee, that little boy will be crawling. But no, my gentle giant cried. He questioned the boy’s manners with his eyes. “Why don’t you want me to play with the truck? You had your time with it so its my turn now.” Peewee did not know why the little boy was hitting him. When I carried him away from the truck, he felt he was being punished. I felt crushed. I wanted to put Peewee inside a bubble to protect him from bad things. But its not how real life works.

It is heartbreaking to see your child heartbroken and frustrated. I felt Peewee’s frustration. I felt it to my bones. I felt angry. I wanted to retaliate. Then I felt pity for the little boy. I felt bad for him for having parents not teaching him manners. Then I felt blessed and thankful. Blessed that we have given Peewee so much love that he doesn’t need to hurt somebody to get what we wants. Thankful that we have taught him well.

John said, I should let Peewee experience this so that he will learn. I always say “but he’s just a baby, naka-diaper pa nga e”. Someday, John and I will educate Peewee on how to protect himself from both verbal and physical abuse (eck, lawyer-mode kicking in). Until then, we will protect him as long as we can, as much as we can and as much as Peewee will allow us to.

What are your growing pains as a parent?