This afternoon I offered to take you to see Ronald McDonald at McDonald’s tomorrow, seeing his appearance advertised on a sign as we drove past. You were less than enthused.
“Is he that thing that’s always coming to our school?” you asked.
Recalling afternoons when I’d pick you up and see Ronald outside with your class, I said, “Yes, he is that thing.”
“Oh,” you said. “Well then I guess we can go see him.”
I looked at you in the back seat. You appeared so old. You had no interest in Ronald McDonald anymore.
I should have known.
I need to remember how diligently time has been working to obliterate the world we once knew. No longer do you enjoy “Yo Gabba Gabba,” “Jack’s Big Music Show,” “Lazytown” and “Dora the Explorer” on the Noggin channel, which has been changed to “Nick Jr.” It’s been years since you even watched that channel.
Now you enjoy actual TV drama with plots, resolutions and antagonists. You watch television for the same reasons the rest of us do – not because TV in general is a phenomenon.
We no longer strive to ride your bike without falling. Yes, the bar has been raised and we now focus on riding it quickly and without stopping – improving the foundation we built many yesterdays ago.
Making messes with watercolors is no longer painting. Using the toilet without making a mess does not trigger a celebration. You are now reprimanded for spilling food. Speaking of food, you can no longer eat anything you want.
Why, oh why, would you enjoy a red-headed circus reject who represents childhood obesity?
Silly me – I should have thought about that, especially considering your school is clearly in bed with every fast food chain under the Southern sun.
I remember the first time I saw you, the last thing you said tonight before you fell asleep and everything in between. I know I’ve gone to sleep a few times, but it feels like one glorious day with no intention to end and start another. Time flies.
Time … flies.
Thank you, love, for being my life. You have given me a reason to look forward and back, both with thought and adoration. You have garnished my life with a sense of purpose. You’ve gently motivated me to watch the clock.
I don’t know what I’d do without you. I love you.