“It’s time mom.”
“You said after sister went to bed.”
“The table is clear.”
“I made you a glass of ice water.”
So, it begins.
First I take the pink ribbon off my deck and shuffle. He gets his deck out of his special velvet black bag. We both lay down our six prize cards, draw seven for our hand and the battle begins.
He can’t sit still. His legs jerk around as he constantly shifts positions. He has a smile all over his face and the excitement is contagious. Oh, no. He has Mewtwo. Bye-bye my little Pokemon. But wait. It’s not over yet. I can evolve Tepig. I might have a chance.
And so it goes.
When he got his first pack of cards, I secretly threw them away. That was when he was 5. I saw these cards as something commercial, being marketed to my boy. They were promoting violence and fighting and I would have none of that. My sweet boy is not interested in that stuff.
Well, he is 8 1/2 now. I finally decided to sit down and see what this thing was all about. OK. Some of them are cute. Some look like turtles (which I love). You have to do math (big plus). Nobody actually dies (another plus). It’s really like any other card game, but with cute made-up creatures with names like “Bellossom” (flower-like), “Piplup (penguin-like)” “Eevee” (dog-like) and “Bidoof” (beaver-like).
The part I dislike is that it’s designed to keep you buying cards. In order to get a “really good deck,” you have to keep buying packs and packs of cards. Commercialism at it’s best. But here is why I’m not only allowing this, but contributing to it (he got 1 pack for Valentine’s Day and 2 for Easter).
1) It’s fun. Really. Even grandma has her own deck now.
2) We don’t do video games and very little TV/movies (more on that another time).
3) It’s a good lesson in collecting things responsibly.
4) He got up and got dressed AND made me breakfast this morning so we could play a game before school.
So, we will continue our nightly, and sometimes early morning, Pokemon games. I will treasure these moments when mom is still “cool” and he can share something he loves with me.
I will continue to encourage him to give cards he isn’t using to friends that have none (which he is doing already). I will keep the dialogue open about how anything can be an obsession and how everything should be in moderation. And I will keep trying to beat him and that darn Mewtwo!