I begin most days at the kitchen table with my youngest. She picks at her breakfast, and I write or read while encouraging her through her meal. Some days are uneventful, but others she indulges in fantastical adventures. Those are my favorite.
The other day, she turned our table into a rocket ship. Inbetween bites of waffle and cherries, she described our journey to the moon. It was apparently a rough flight. We landed safely next to the desert, which she was quick to explore. Off to the snowy plains of our living room, she constructed an entire family of snow people comprising our own family. My job was to help carry these heavy sculptures back to the ship so we could return them safely home. Moon snow is quite heavy, you see, and I am strong enough to help.
This interaction filled me. I’m overjoyed that my kid trusts me enough to share her alternate reality unfettered. As a child, I was terrified to expose too much of my inner world. Even at her age I had the concept of “reality” reinforced enough to know that private space would not be a welcome guest. I stuffed down my imaginary friends and my desire to be a firetruck and pursued “normal”.
Fortunately art, drugs, and music cut that pursuit short. A couple thousand micrograms of LSD does a damned fine job of hammering the weird back into you (though I don’t recommend it *wink*). Art, music, and literature abound in our lives, and we keep the odd and silly knobs turned to eleven.
It is vital, I think, that we foster a passion for silliness while we seek to guide our tiny humans to adulthood. To be creative, wild, and imaginative is as important as being focused, driven, and tenacious. It frightens me to think of the interior lives of those denied or deprived of silliness. A constant barrage of worry marked only by a desperate clamber for acceptance fills their actions.
The future holds many more trips to the snowy desert of the moon. One day she will learn the facts, be she already knows the Truth: her world is what she makes it, not what she is told. And while some may chirp, “that is unrealistic,” I say, “Good.” She’s four: realism can wait.
[NOTE: I really don't recommend large doses of any drug. The decisions I made as a youth were not particularly smart. Be safe out there.]