My kids are growing up. This morning they ran into our room rather unexpectedly and announced we had to get dressed, close our eyes and follow them. Kat took my hand, Aidan took Davids and led us out to the breakfast table.
“Open your eyes” they shouted happily.
The table was set perfectly with a stack of freshly made toast a steaming bowl of scrambled eggs and two suprisingly good tasting long black coffees.
This is the part where I kick myself out of dreamland into the reality that my daughter is only 6 and my son is 4 and they had made us breakfast.
I was horrified.
I was amazed.
I was sure someone somewhere would criticise us for allowing our children to use dangerous things like hotplates and toasters and coffee machines and *gasp* breaking eggs.
In our defence, we didn’t know they were doing any of this and the more I think about it, I am less horrified.
You see, they know how to do all of this, not because we have trained them to make us breakfast but because they have watched us do it. They are learning machines! And while it might be worthwhile to teach them the alphabet or algebra, we know all of that comes in time. Right now, we teach them as we share space in the kitchen or in the backyard or as we play at the beach. We show them how we do things, how we try to be safe and they are learning all of the time, growing all of the time.
Still thinking about growth, I think today I realised that D and I have grown up considerably. Our first major purchase together was a lounge. It took weeks of debate and included no less than 4 massive arguments, 1 of which involved D storming out of a store and attempting to walk to his home in Turramurra out of complete frustration. We lacked a lot of the skills adults hone around negotiation, compromise and patience.
Fast forward ten years(?) and we have this mornings relatively big deal of a fridge dying and needing to be replaced asap. We calmly went out, visited a few stores, made a few decisions, narrowed our choices and within the morning had purchased and arranged delivery of a new fridge without blood pressure concerns and more importantly without anyone leaving in tears or storming out.
I am hoping, that as we grow towards being more even tempered as adults, our children will be watching and learning and maybe, like breakfast they’ll just know how to make it happen.
It is a pretty crazy hope though because I know deep inside I am just as childish and selfish and manic as I ever was, that part of me just lacks opportunities to escape. Tonight (at the end of a very mature kind of day) was one of those opportunities. I ran away to the movies by myself like I used to do when I was a kid. I sat in the back row with my feet on the seats and relished the dialogue, the soundtrack, the story and everything I could see all over the screen. And it didn’t matter what I watched, it was big and it was beautiful and it was just so much fun :)
Of course I signed up to the rewards program so I could get movies more cheaply, earn points to get freebies and get notifications of when special events are on. I am concluding that was a very grown up thing to do.