The Hand of Awesomeness

Momservation: Time marches on but mothers will always see babies when they look at their children.

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 Baby Girl turned double digits yesterday.

Seems like just yesterday I had to induce my pregnancy just to get her to come out, cooking away at 9lbs, 2 ounces, 23 inches long (affectionately nick-named The Lunker).

A decade later Whitney is still deliciously stubborn and larger than life. She is the Pop Rocks in my candy bowl of life.

Four decades of rockin' Steven Tyler pulls in another fan

She has also developed her first human crush: Steven Tyler of Aerosmith. (Her first non-human crush was and still is Goofus, her stuffed monkey.)

She became acquainted with the Aerosmith frontman watching “American Idol.” Then, suddenly, she got all giggly and silly and starting saying, “Steven Tyler” they way Squints Palledorous from “The Sandlot (greatest movie EVER, BTW) gets all moony and starry eyed when he sees Wendy Peffercorn.

When I asked Whitney, what exactly it was about a wrinkled rocker six times her age that appealed to her she said, “His hand of awesomeness just reached out and touched me.”

Hard to argue with that.

Since then she has papered her wall with Steven Tyler pictures cut from magazines and printed off the internet. She’s watched all the Aerosmith videos on YouTube. And of course she tunes in every week to American Idol for her weekly double dose of Steven Tyler.

So it only made sense that for her 10th birthday she got what she wanted: Steven Tyler.

At least in a way that her mother approved of and not on a creepy future groupie level – posters.

True, it was a little early for pre-teen wall decorations of heartthrobs, but I think Steven Tyler as a heartthrob is debatable. He seems fermented and safe – mellowed from a shot of Everclear to a comforting merlot. Granted, at ten I think I had a Garfield poster on my wall. But later when all the girls had C. Thomas Howell and Ralph Macchio plastered on their walls, I had Tom Selleck. So I sorta get it.

And truly what I think Whitney loves about him is his music. I have always said I believe Whitney will marry someone who makes her laugh, but a guy with a good mixed tape might just snag her too.

So when I couldn’t find a Steven Tyler or Aerosmith poster around town (internet killed the poster store), I printed a 5×7 and 8×10 glossy and framed them for her. Her brother thought of getting her an Aerosmith greatest hits CD (that he could then download to his iPod). And Daddy grudgingly approved a Visa gift card for her to go shop for anything that would satisfy her Steven Tyler crush.

That night after the kids went to bed and I was picking up the piles of wrapping paper, ribbon, tissue and gifts I noticed Whitney’s cache of Steven Tyler gifts still in the living room. I went to peek at my newly minted 10 year old who had refused to leave the womb but now was racing toward growing up. And there snuggled in her arms was not the likeness of Steven Tyler, but her first true love, Goofus.

Sorry Steven, you just can't compete with Goofus


As it should be.


    • kellimwheeler says:

      Thanks Larisa! We were rocking out to Love in an Elevator from her new CD and she says, “Love in an elevator -that doesn’t make sense!”
      And I hope it never does for her…

  1. V. says:

    this is so fantastic…my daughter, too is a huge Steven Tyler fan! Same as your little cutie, she discovered him on AI and since then, it’s itunes cards and Aerosmith music, YouTube videos and wallpaper on her ipod! 🙂 she’s researched his stats, how big his mouth can open, has his new book (which i am reading first…as it’s not really for a ‘tween!), has any and every magazine he is on or in… makes me giggle. 🙂

    For her 12th birthday in June, my sister made her a slideshow of Steven Tyler photographs set to Aerosmith music … and in the middle of it there’s a photo that i photoshopped of him and her together! she loved it!! I printed it and framed it for her, and it sits on our family-photo table.

    I adore Steven Tyler, i think he’s just a cool cat. Pretty cute that our (not-so) little girls have a crush! 🙂

    • kellimwheeler says:

      That is the coolest birthday present ever! I did record a thing on Steven Tyler (from the Biography Channel?) for my daughter – but it was a good thing I watched it first. Decided it was a little too much information for her. Unfortunately now, she’s become a closet fan because peer pressure got to her. Her friends started saying, “Ew! He’s so old! He’s so wrinkly!” It was the first time I’ve ever seen her care what other people think and she took down her Steven Tyler pictures. It was very sad because it was all so innocent and pure. My friends never understood my love of Tom Selleck as Magnum PI in the 80’s either… 🙂

  2. aerofan73 says:

    Ah! Someone with the same mindset! Tell your little one that she has developed a crush on the sweetest, smartest, most witty, funniest, talented and don’t forget SEXIEST man on earth! I have been in love with Steven Tyler for 23 years now. He is a shining example of never giving up on something you want bad enough. He has looked the demon addiction in the face and destroyed it. His music and his voice are what got me through losing both of my grandparents within 11 days of each other. She obviously has a knack at choosing to emulate only the most influential people around. Well done little one!

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