Frantic–that’s how mornings are with the boys. Every morning feels like a rush to the last chopper out of ‘Nam. The second oldest lays in bed sulking about how tired he is. The oldest yells at his younger brother to hurry, conveniently forgetting he’s still in his pajamas. More than a little shouting occurs at times from hurried parents (though the shouting has diminished drastically since I instigated the 70% rule).
The baby girl is crying because the youngest boy woke her up by running through the house pretending to be superman.
One parent is smeared in peanut butter because a flailing child bumped into her leg. The other parent is jumping between the open door, looking for the bus, and the boys’ bedrooms, looking for shoes.
My blood pumps and all the while I think, “I can’t wait for them to go.”
The rumble of the bus turns, appearing at the end of our street.
“Let’s go, let’s go!”
One boy dons his jacket while the other, blissfully unaware, dangles his feet while sitting on the toilet.
“Let’s go!” mom shouts.
Handing off a piece of toast like a baton, the misses shoves the kids out the door and I walk them to the bus.
And then it begins–the reason it all becomes worth it.
After the older two boys enter the bus, the youngest boy (three-years-old) crouches in a runner’s stance and grins at the bus driver. She grins back. He shouts, “Ready….Go!”
And then he runs, racing the bus. Sunlight rises, highlighting his little body like a halo. His little, shoe-less feet pump and he balls his fists. The look of determination on his face rivals that of the star of Chariots of Fire.
The bus driver creeps along, letting him lead–letting him win the “race.”
Can a three-year-old outrun a bus?
Can a thirty-year-old?
But is there any harm in him believing?
But probably not.
Soon, this little three-year-old will enter a world of “can’ts” and “don’ts.” His certitude about conquering any task may be tempered at best, or destroyed at worst. He’ll eventually meet the limits of his abilities and find out how depressing it is to fail. Or worse, he won’t even try because someone else says he can’t.
But today, he has no limitations.
I’m glad my parents lied to me. I’m glad that, before I learned my own limitations, I believed I was limitless. I’m glad that, on occasion, the kid inside believes I can do anything.
Thanks mom and dad, for lying to me. Because sometimes, kids need to be lied to.