Awwwww! Grow Up!

Posted by in Being joyful, family, growing up, letting go, Young at heart

Awwwww! Grow Up!

This is one of my many favorite photos of my daughter. She’s eighteen now, only a year older than in this photo. I think I love it so because it reminds me of when she was little. It was taken that split second before she launched herself down the slide in full prom gear, sans shoes. The look of excited uncertainty dancing across her face, and those little bare feet wriggling with anticipation.


Then she let loose.

No mixed emotions here. No wondering if the other prom goers were watching, judging. No doubt that Mom wasn’t kidding when I said, “I think you guys should play on the playground before dinner.” No worries that her dress would be ruined. It wasn’t, but if it had been, well we already got all the serious photos. She was just a kid in that moment. No anxiety about graduating and going off to college, no baggage from her horrible high school years. She was just a kid, again. Still.

Before I set to writing tonight, I wanted to get comfy and contemplate a bit. I told my husband, “I’m going to go take my bath and think about being a grown up.” (I’m going to pretend to be indignant here, imagine that, if you will) he LAUGHED at me and said, “You’ll never grow up!”

Damn straight. He meant it as a compliment and I took it as such.

He and I are both really just big kids, at least we strive to be. We have real, grown up jobs that are stressful at times. We have a mortgage, car payments. There are lawns to mow, dishes and clothes to wash (Boy! Are there clothes to wash!). But we are kids. Nearly fifty-year-old kids, but we are kids at heart.

When the spirit moves us we have beach picnics on Monday nights after our workaday week begins, just to remind us that every day we are edging ever-nearer the weekend. We love to drive go carts, go to Disney and Universal and play video games. We have had just about every game system produced. I’ve led Sonic around by the nose as he collected rings and am on a first name basis with Mario and Luigi. I’ve defiantly shouted, “For the Horde!” when we played World of Warcraft, and my sister and I cried when we saw Cinderella’s coronation at Magic Kingdom.

There is something about those perfect, flawless moments of being childlike. Those moments when you stop caring about what others think, the moment you allow life to become just a little less serious. You just hurl yourself down that slide, barefoot in your prom dress. Why so serious? Indeed.

My mom asked me recently if I remembered one particular snowy day in Arkansas when I was little. That day I told her that I wanted to have a snow picnic. So, we bundled up, grabbed our lunch and a blanket and sat out in the back yard on the cold ground and had ourselves a snow picnic, by golly. She gets it, she’s an awesome mom. After all, who do you think introduced me to Mario and Luigi?

photo credit: jakedobkin via photopin cc

photo credit: jspad via photopin cc


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