A few days ago, I blew the minds of four six year olds. Their mouths were agape in awe, asking how I could perform such an amazing feat. You’d think I was walking on water, but I was just coloring in the lines.
That’s one remarkable thing about being a grown up around kids. It’s not difficult to be awesome.
You don’t have to be a mom or dad, grandma or grandpa, cool aunt, fun uncle, teacher, mailman or a fireman. You can be the stranger behind a kid in line at CVS and kids will give you rock star super fan eyes, because you rock.
And it’s true, right? If you have kids, surely you’ve watched them struggle to learn something – how to get a piece of food from table to mouth, how to swallow a cheerio without choking and throwing it up, how to stop your body without falling when running down a hill, how to overcome frustration without throwing a huge tantrum – and you’ve thought “Dear Lord, how did I ever survive through that?” But we did! We are here! We ARE incredible!
We can put these cryptic symbols called letters together to form words. Without even thinking about it, we can buckle our seatbelt on the first try at least 9 out of 10 times. Our brains hold a database containing all of the words to “who stole the cookie from the cookie jar,” the punch line to most jokes they’ll hear in their first 10 years, the Spanish word for “red,” and how to fold a cootie catcher. We really are miraculous!
We can lift kids up to touch seemingly unreachable things, like ceiling fans. We can spot pennies on sidewalks and let kids keep them, and draw stuff that resembles the stuff we are trying to draw enough that people can guess it by their third try. Not only do we know how to use a gearshift, we know that the R on it stands for “Reverse,” and we’ll remember it next month. We don’t need to review the rules for Mastermind every time we play, can cut with knives, and can conceptualize that when a birthday party is happening next week, that doesn’t mean it’s happening today or tomorrow or the day after that. We can untie knots and throw objects with the assurance that they won’t go backwards over our heads if we don’t want them to. Darn straight they should look at us with big admiring eyeballs.
It wasn’t easy to get here, soak up the glory, grownups. Show off your skills. You are amazing, incredible and awesome, purely because you’ve made it this far. Now get off your computer or phone and spend time with a kid. Boost your ego. Share those hard earned skills with the next generations. Show them how to bake brownies, tell them a silly story about yourself, read them a book, and do a funny dance for the next random kid you see in a grocery cart. You are a rock star.