This year I have the lovely opportunity of giving art and cooking classes to one of my former playgroup students. She is six years old now, smart, lovable and so much fun. Recently she stated matter-of-factly that grown-ups are so lucky. They get to do anything they want. As my dad used to say: “That reminds me of a story.”
When my daughter, Sara, was about eight years old she said the same thing to me. But more specifically she said I could go into a store anytime I wanted and buy all the candy I want. What I said next surprised even me. I suggested that we reverse roles that coming weekend. At school she told her friend Elena. Elena jumped at the chance, and wanted to play the part of my father. They were both buzzing with excitement.
That Friday I picked them up after school. Upon arriving home, Sara took ownership of my purse and counted the money in my wallet. Next, they chose an outfit for me to wear. Thankfully they had me wear a coat over it! We all went to the video store (remember, this was 1994), were they picked a movie (my memory says it was “Dennis the Menace”). They let me get a cartoon. I chose “Goofie.” Then, it was off to the grocery store. There they bought dinner (corn on the cob), and lots and lots of junk. Once home, they decided I could be the mom for the time it took to prepare dinner. After that I was sent to bed!! I don’t remember getting to see my cartoon. No fair! I don’t remember them staying up particularly late, or eating all of the junk. But I do remember them being pretty quiet.
They wanted to do it again the next weekend and I said “No!” And what was the lesson here, and what did they learn? None, and nothing. But it was great fun and a funny story to share and reminisce about all these years later.