Tuesday, October 25, 2011

"Where Are We Going?": Signs along the Journey

Often from the backseat I hear little Ainsley ask "Mama, where we are going?" I love her phrasing and the sound of her little voice as she wonders aloud just where she might be headed. I hear it so very often and truly appreciate her precious turn of phrase and the fearless wonder in her voice. But it was only a few days ago that I realized how profound a question it was. The fact that she knows that it's me, her driver, who determines just where we are going is one thing but there's more to it than that. Beyond our little ventures to the market or orchard it is largely me, her mama who decides just where we are headed in this little life. How we speak and act in front of these lovelies really does help to determine so much of who they are--where they will go. On the very best days this is wonderful enough to make my spine tingle. On the not so good days, it is intensely humbling and sobering. Sometimes the signs along the way give me a little pause either for the unexpected beauty or the unexpected warnings:

We went down to Boston for the weekend and had a fantastic time. It's such a beautiful city filled with amazing history of this great country. Seemed only fitting to see it all again on Columbus Day. When we got out of the car and felt the warm sun on our backs it was Emie who said first, "It's a great day to see somewhere new." It was Dirk who quickly added "You have your mother's spirit." I'm pretty sure my feet didn't touch the ground for the next few steps. I don't always do this mothering bit with elegance and grace -- but I'm nothing if not the eternal optimist in front of the little lambs. I'll find the silver lining in every almost every missed connection, traffic jam, and spilled beverage. But to see this penchant for the positive come from my girls-- well, that's worth a trip to the moon and back for me.

I do adore the way Emie views the world. Each day holds a promise for something magical to unfold. And from her perspective, it pretty much always does. We did see all sorts of amazing if not magical things in sweet little Beantown. The street performers at Faneuil Hall did not disappoint. Though the bare chested nipple-pierced man who put himself into a net-less badminton racquet got props for Most Unique Way to try to earn a buck - Most Entertaining easily went to these two charming blokes. They were winsome, fun, and altogether talented. Extra points for not taking the low-road with tasteless jokes and barbs. Ainsley would definitely call it magic.