Driving home late one evening, my daughter Sarah-Joy and I were the only ones awake in the car. It was a crystal clear night, and as we drove I spotted a falling star cascading across a cloudless sky. It was a rare and dazzling sight. Cresting the last hill on the highway close to our home, Sarah looked out at the landscape dotted with light. She excitedly told me,
“Look, Mommy, that must be where that falling star landed!”
House light/ star light – I wasn’t going to disillusion her. I’d already made that mistake once.
While we were strolling through a parking lot on our way back to our car, Sarah noticed a puddle with beautiful colors of blue, green, red and yellow swirled in it. She thought it was a rainbow caught right there on the pavement. I corrected her so she would know it was just an oil leak from a car. Her response,
“Oh mommy, I wish you hadn’t told me that.”
So did I, as soon as I said it.
Sometimes we just need to leave well enough alone. When they’re 15, 16, 21, they won’t believe their stuffed animals talk anymore, they will understand that daddy can’t actually “smell” McDonald’s french fries when he’s driving down the road, and they won’t think that stars land, or rainbows live in puddles.
Let kids be kids!
They grow up soon enough
and so much of the fantasy of imagination is replaced by cold hard facts.