Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Fun and its Antithesis

Parenting's best moments are the carefree ones. Unbridled joy, discovery and wonder. Being childlike. Existing in a pure moment. That purity means a kind of blindness to larger patterns, themes, realities, reactions, obligations, consequences, histories. Just a moment and an emotion without regard for what came before and what it might mean for the future.

I am so hung up on sorting, organizing, connecting, understanding, that I am not so good at childlike. My response, pathetically, is to want to work at it. I am earnest if nothing else, but I think it might be hopeless.

I can watch, though, and I can try to record it and I can try in my cerebral and impotent way to let go. I can, as my husband says, try to be more duck-like.

File under progress: We survived the tea party. But really, actually, and somewhat surprisingly, it went well. I might go so far as to say that it was a success. No, they did not let me finish my forensics-style reading of Perfectly Arugula, which was the inspiration for this event. And mostly they just ran in a crazed, locomotive procession of 2 and 3 year-old girls (led by one 6 year-old boy) in a loud and tireless loop through the main floor of the house. But I think everyone was happy. Food was eaten, crafts were made. Eager not to drink alone, I plied the ladies with wine.  Silently, a candle was burning for Eva on the family room mantel.   When the candle wicks stopped smoldering and the insulin was cresting in the children's bloodstreams, we said our relieved and pleasant goodbyes.

Waddaya know, it would appear that the third time was the charm.


  1. Earnestness is underrated.

    I'm glad that the tea party was a SUCCESS. No tiny lil fonts for me! It sounds lovely. Definitely the third time's the charm.

  2. I'm going to have to track down a copy of Perfectly Arugula - the tea party sounds like it was great fun. I've often wished that being childlike were as easy as being childish.

    And I love the image of Eva's candle burning on the mantel.