About six months ago, Joey was playing on the cul-de-sac with a friend, riding around on the friend's toy car. Another boy, who is actually better friends with the boy Joey was playing with, showed up and went over to Joey. He kind of sat on the front of the car Joey was riding on, blocking him from going further. This boy is a nice boy normally, but he just turned eight, and I thought maybe he was being territorial with his friend and intimidating Joey, who was then five. I was at a distance talking to our lawn mower (uh, a man - not the machine!) and I don't think the boy saw me.
I felt my nerves on end; my blood started to boil and I even felt almost sick - at the thought of someone picking on my little boy. I wanted to run over and save him. It took me back to when I was in grade school and an older boy from my school would come up and scare me with threats when he'd see me playing in our neighborhood. He terrorized me, and it was awful.
But I fought my urge, stayed back, and let Joey handle it himself. After a couple minutes, the boy got up and walked away. Joey started to ride around again when I casually called him over to ask him what the boy said. Joey answered, "Oh, he was just asking me if I would say the alphabet backwards for him again."
Ha! and whew! That was it? I didn't know the boy knew Joey could do that; he first surprised us by reciting it backwards out of the blue when he was two years old. I came to find out the boy asked him any time he saw Joey, ever since he first heard him say it.
I still have to deal with that first time I see or hear of my little boy getting bullied by another. But I have a feeling he'll hold his own pretty well. He didn't comply with the boy's request ... because he "didn't feel like it".