A few months ago I looked at Dennis’s and Shirley’s faces. They looked gorgeous. I said to them, “You are never going to grow up. I want you to stay just this way forever.”
Dennis smiled, showing off his beautiful baby teeth. “N-o-o-o,” he countered in a sing song voice.
“Yes,” I said matter-of-factly. “Next September we will celebrate your fifth birthday. And then the next September we celebrate your fifth birthday. We will always celebrate your fifth birthday and you will stay small and cute and always want to hang out with your mother.”
“Next September, I’m going to turn six.” Dennis is a very rational child. No use in hoodwinking him.
“No I’m not,” she said. “I’m going to be four.” My kids are freaking brilliant.
“Shirley,” I said firmly, “You are going to be three forever. You’re going to snuggle with me on the couch when we watch a movie and you’re going to comb my hair pretty when I’m tired and you’re going to read me stories. Forever.”
“No mommy. You read me stories.”
“Oh yes. That is true.” Sort of. I have been trying to talk her into reading me stories for the last year. It helps put me right to sleep.
Still, at that moment, I did not want them to ever grow up. I wasn’t thinking about all the clothes they threw on the floor or the milk they spilled on the table or the clothes they piled on to my laundry. Obviously I wasn’t thinking about that or we wouldn’t have been having this conversation.
Instead, I was wishing that they could be like Peter Pan. I wanted them to never grow up. There had to be
some pixie dust somewhere I could find to keep them young or does pixie dust just make you fly? I don’t remember the dust’s exact magical properties as Peter Pan was my least favorite Disney movie. Still, I wanted my kids to stay young and close and sweet forever.
Since I knew I wasn’t going to get my wish, I could do the next best thing. Make a list. A Peter Pan list. A list of all of the things I wanted to do with my children before they grew up. I’m starting it right now. Want to join me on my trip to Never Never Land? Get your list ready and let’s go!