– You always hear that kids often make you slow down the pace of your life – which is a pain when you’re on a tight schedule, of course, but it can have some lovely side-benefits – and we’re just getting to this phase now.
In the last couple of weeks, Lily has insisted that we listen and watch for birds; point at each plane that flies across the sky (“Where air-pane going?” she always asks, insisting to get on my shoulders so she can see them more closely); and stare at people working out on treadmills, ellipticals, and stationary bikes at the local gym; we just sat right down on the sidewalk while peering through the windows.
We also regularly perform “Ring Around the Rosie” in various restaurants in the area. No one tips, but that would be nice, wouldn’t it?
All of these things aren’t things I would do of my own accord, of course; but it’s nice to have a reason to watch the world with wonder, and in slow-motion, a little bit every day. This part, I like.
Until I really, really have to be somewhere.
– We’ve also arrived at a time when there are dependable lures that will distract Lily from doing, or wanting to do, something you desperately wish to avoid (completely stopping in the middle of the street, trying to venture into a neighbor’s garden, cracking open each CD we own and putting it in the stereo and then taking it out, etc.). Currently, the trump cards we have are smoothies; her cousin Abby; her grandparents, particularly “Ba-pa”; anyplace with slides; Gizmo, the one dog in the world she seems unafraid of and always wants to cross the street to pet (Gizmo belongs to a neighbor and is just aloof enough for Lily’s tastes); Michael, a boy two months older than her that lives on our street; a nearby restaurant named Cowley’s, where she LOVES the mac and cheese; and the library – though we’re there so often, they might start charging us rent soon, and Lily just expects to go all the time now.
What’s funny about the trump card system is that you find yourself holding onto it in reserve. As in, “Wow, I’d like to go inside instead of standing out in this cold, misty rain. But is this situation smoothie-worthy? Or will I need that sure-thing later in the day, when she’s making calls on my cell phone and trying to start my car?”
As a result, I get looser with the trumps each day as the hour gets later. Why not? There’s less to lose at that point.