He trots eagerly thru the parking lot and into the store, commenting on what he is going to eat along the way. As we enter, he runs up to pick out his prime slice of pumpkin loaf thru the glass, then scores his own straw cup full of soy milk (and perhaps even whipped cream). Then he perches happily on a big chair, flirting with all who pass by as we both enjoy our drinks.
I can almost forget that he is a demanding little soul, and think of him as a friend, someone I would go out with before the thought of children was anywhere near my mind. It reminds me of the days sitting and studying or reading in coffeehouses, with no worries about him. Now, even if I go without him, he is still on my mind, as I’m wondering how he is doing without me, if he is asking for me, if he needs something only I can give him, and I cannot fully relax and enjoy the peace and calm.
It is just a little bit of peace and calm away from the disaster that is my house, especially because I don’t have to clean up all those pumpkin bread crumbs that end up all over the floor . The conversation is a little different these days, instead of debating deep issues of spirituality and the like, it involves other people and their cell phones, the truck passing by outside, and the baby playing at the adjacent table.
The change is not unwelcome, however, as it helps me open up to the world around me through his eyes, rather than continuing in my self-absorbed state. That is one of the wonderful things about having children, as it forces you to consider others first.