When your kids start going to school, you're bound to run into minor differences of opinion in regards to parenting.
On occasion they can be major differences, but mostly (at least in our school district) all the parents want pretty much the same thing for their kids: good education, health, happiness, etc.
Well, it was one of these minor differences of opinion that I experienced the other day. I was picking up my kid from the after-school care in the lower level of the elementary. I bumped into the mother of my kid's best friend, and we were chit-chatting while our respective kids got their respective gear together so we could go to our respective homes.
Nothing but respect here.
As we were chatting an hyperacting 7-year-old boy came scurrying down the hall like a gerbil on meth. Eyes wide, hair wild, he looked at me and exclaimed, "Did you see all the snow we got! I can't wait to get home and play in it! Woooooo!"
This was followed by a back flip and a maneuver in which he ran up one wall, across the ceiling and down the other to stop and gave an unreturned high-five in front of me.
I, without so much as a pause, gave him my best "sorry to burst your bubble" look and said, "Oooh, yeah. Have you been outside since you got to school this morning?
"No," he said.
"Mmmm. Yeah. Well, it's been so sunny today that all the snow has melted. It's just a soggy muddy mess out there right now. Bummer, kid."
I swear, the kid shrank at least an inch. His shoulders, formerly held high in excitement, slumped in disappointment. His face, a few seconds ago alight with the enthusiasm of youth, was suddenly gloomy as a San Francisco summer.
With heavy feet, he trudged despondently back into the nearby classroom to ponder the cruelties of fate at robbing him of his fun in the snow.
My neighbor, the mother with whom I had been visiting, looked at me, a little surprised but also amused.
"You're mean," she said, smiling at my little joke.
But you know what? I don't really think it was all that mean. Sure I was having a bit of fun at the expense of this kid. But isn't that why we have kids in the first place? For the LOLZ?
But the way I see it, I was doing the kid a favor.
I mean, think about how happy he was when his parents picked him up and he went outside to see his winter wonderland intact and ready for sledding.
And besides, it was a valuable lesson for the young chap. Don't trust everything people tell you, especially if they're over 30. Gather evidence before jumping to conclusions.
And above all, don't let the words of a bunch of nattering nabobs of negativity dash your dreams or winter fun.
tagged: snow, school, neighbor, neighborhood, life lessons, kids, parenting