An Open Letter To People Without ChildrenEva Glettner
I hate you. All you smug, tanned folks by the pool with long novels that you actually get to read and mojitos that you don’t spill. I never thought I would hate you because frankly, I was one of you. Once. As I trail after little children with sunscreen in their eyes, I can’t help but eye you watching me. You’re judging. You’re thinking “I am SO glad that I’m not her.” You roll your eyes and sigh. You may even turn to your partner and say “I wish those kids would shut up.”
You look at your perfectly tight skin and breast hugging bikini and cover your ears. And I feel bad. I doubt myself and my sagging kid ravaged body. Perhaps my boys (neither exceptionally or ill behaved) are doing something wrong. They are ruining your vacation by splashing in the pool and loudly pronouncing “I have to pee!” So I tell my boys: “Talk quietly. There are people resting.” I urge them “Don’t ruin their relaxing time.” I tell them where to play to minimize bothering you.
But you know what? I am SO wrong about it all. These are kids. They talk, sometimes loudly. They run, oftentimes when they should be walking. They forget about their inner monologue and say things out loud that might not always be so appropriate. So what? It’s all a part of the learning process. Think about how boring it would be if children were in fact mini-adults. How utterly and extremely monotonous.
Here’s some food for thought. Kids are awesome. We need to stop making excuses and start living. Take a cue from your own brood. I watch my sons ride their bicycles with unbridled passion. The look of innocence and bliss is contagious. Adults have a tendency to over-think. Children sometimes forget to think at all. The latter is preferable in this crazy and mixed up place we call life.
So, I have a few words for you people. I am done apologizing. In fact, the only mistake here is that I ever told my children to be quiet in the first place. Pools are for shouting and jumping and cannonballing. Libraries are for soft voices and respectful tones. Got it? Oh, and if you’re hungry I’ve got some goldfish for the road. I wouldn’t want you to leave on an empty stomach.
And me? I’ve got a cannonball to perfect.
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