I really, really have no experience with children.
I was, at one point, a summer camp counselor for four years, but children in a group setting are not children, they are CHILDREN. An entity. You know, like Borg. It’s about managing all of them in relation to each other.
Having no child-skills to speak of, in my limited interactions with wee ones i just do what my mother did – treat them like fully functional small adults who are slightly hard of hearing. I don’t engage in baby-talk, and i don’t engage in tacit little white lies about coal in stockings and Easter Bunnies.
Last night we had a wee pre-Thanksgiving for our friends that happened to include a toddler guest. As Elise and I are both blue state yuppies to the nth degree, dinner was slightly peculiar and entirely vegetarian. Not exactly toddler-friend fare. So, everyone spent the meal coaxing the infinitely cute toddler to try some of the peculiar offerings on his plate.
“Try the creamed corn! It’s like Mac’n’Cheese, but without macaroni. Or cheese.”
Eventually they hit upon the superhero angle. Superheroes definitely ate their food.
“How could the Flash be so fast without eating his fennel?”
They were on the right path, but it still wasn’t quite working. As i had the vastest comic knowledge of all in attendance (and was at this point slightly inebriated on my second or third Rose Martini), i felt the need to chime in.
“You know, Superman doesn’t just eat his vegetables. He eats everything. Superman invented the clean plate club.”
The toddler looked at me, eyes innocent and wide, while the guests regarded me in mute amusement/horror.
“Why,” i posited, “do you think he has so many more powers than all the other superheroes.”
The toddler dubiously lifted up his fork as a tiny part of my soul withered and died.
How the hell do you mommy bloggers do this every day?
Actually,as an artist, you should be able to relate to children better than most folks. Children live in a world of imagination, fantasy, and emotion. You may think you’re doing them a favour by not condescending to them, but you’re also depriving them of one of the best parts of childhood…hell,the best parts of any age…that innocent, beautiful belief in AnythingInTheWorldIsPossible. :)
I love children.I don’t have any, but I actually get along with them better than I do most grown-up people. Children are dreamers,romantics,idealists. Children are free-spirits. Children are all artists.
Only a very few of us are allowed to keep that sensitivity and enthusiasm for life as adults…and if we try, it is beaten out of us in the name of “responsibility”,”obligation”,”being realistic”, and so forth. Let them have their moments for as long as they can. :)
Because, you know, the world WOULD be a better place if there was someone flying about in a blue cape able to protect us from evil, all because he ate his fennel on a regular basis. ;)
Haaa! I bet Superman DID eat his fennel. And just because I’m morbidly curious-how many bites did your toddler guest end up eating?
Sharon G. says
I credit my slippery grasp on sanity to wine and copious amounts of vodka. Thanks for asking.