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I think we have trust issues.

Did you know that, in addition to florals, Georgia O'Keeffe also painted animal skulls? I didn't until yesterday, when my four-year-old told me. But I didn't believe him; I thought he was just saying something as a "joke," like when he tells me at 4:30 p.m. that he already ate his dinner and so he's sure it would be fine if he had a brownie (yes, this is his version of a "joke" but when I mistakenly tell him we're out of juice and then correct myself when I find it at the back of the fridge later, that's "lying.")

I had received his school newsletter earlier that day and I knew that they had been studying an artist, but I couldn't remember which one, so I asked him: "which artist did you study at school this week?" He looked perplexed, head forward, eyes darting up, eyebrows crinkled: "I can't remember her name. But she paints really big, pretty flowers, and she doesn't like it when people remove the paintings from the gallery!" When he said the part about the gallery, he used a big sweeping motion with both of his hands in sync with the movement of his eyeballs, like he really wanted to emphasize this part of the story. I remembered who it was, so I said, "Oh! Was it Georgia O'Keeffe?" He jumped up and down in excitement and some sort of hyper relief, if that exists: "Oh yeah! Hooray, I remembered, it's Georgia O'Keeffe! Georgia O'Keeffe! Georgia O'Keeffe!" By now he was walking in repeated circles around Quinn's round bedroom rug - around and around and around and around, chanting Georgia O'Keeffe's name as he went. Usually when he's this physically hyper, the entire interaction degenerates into yelling and jumping, so I assumed we were done discussing Ms. O'Keeffe. But then, in the middle of one of his seven-step laps, he said, "and you know what else she paints? She paints skulls." I wasn't sure if he knew what a skull was, and four-year-olds, even anal ones like mine, don't have perfect pronunciation, so I said, "Schools?" He stopped his rug lap and looked at me with disgust and an intense desire to clarify: "No! Skulls! I SAID SKULLS." I obviously never learn, and he got his persistent, annoying qualities from me, so I said, "You mean like a skeleton head? That kind of skull?" Bryce gave me a look that suggested he was beginning to believe he'd already surpassed my intellectual level, and was concerned about how he would survive the next few years with such an incompetent parent in charge of him: "Yes, that's what a skull is. A skeleton head. She paints them." Confirming Bryce's belief in my stupidity, I shook my head, confident in my superior adult intelligence: "No, I don't think so, Bryce. She just paints flowers, I'm pretty...sure...hmm." I realized as I was talking that Bryce has never actually told me something like this and ended up being wrong. Kind of like when he was adamant about the number of moons Neptune has, and I kept disagreeing, then had to go back and concede. To a FOUR-YEAR-OLD, people. This time when Bryce said, "YES SHE DOES PAINT SKULLS! I SAW THEM! I'm not even lying!" I thought I should quit while I was ahead. I said, "wow, Bryce, I didn't even know that. Thanks for telling me."

Then I promptly went downstairs and looked it up on Google. He's right. I'm wrong. And I'm starting to think maybe he should be concerned about the level of incompetence in his mother. I mean, the poor kid thinks I assume he's lying if he tells me something I don't already know...AND I went to fact check my four-year-old so I could keep arguing with him if he was wrong! I'm sick. I'm very, very sick.