I joined what felt like everyone else in the Valley who has ever had children today at WRSI’s annual family fest, called The Meltdown. As I listened to a mom talking into her cell, I agreed…the word to describe the whole extravaganza is…overwhelming. But in a good way. The throngs of children and parents, and friends with other people’s children, and older people like me, toting along my grandson…everyone was there with relish, because as I reflected to myself in mid bite of ice cream….that is what makes all of us parents.
We want to share goodness and fun with our beloved offspring. We want to watch them jump, and bound off the trampoline and do that backflip, we want to indulge them with cookies and ice cream, (despite the healthy hummus and apples offered at the oh-so-correct Whole Foods booth) we are all dying to find that time to spend that’s all about our kids. Here, we had reached the perfect plateau of all of this.
And that explained the parking lot, overflowing with car-seat-filled SUVs and minivans, people had to park far, far away because everyone wanted to be at the Meltdown. The bands up on stage were used to playing for audiences of five-year-olds; they spoke out the lyrics, got the kids to make their arms stretch out like airplanes, and in a charming ode to our wonderful valley, choose to sing a set of songs all about famous historical women.
We sat in the bleachers watching Nathan flip over a blue foam wedge, joining a constant parade of tykes flipping or near flipping on and on. At one point sometime after the 100th flip, I began to get up. “No no,” Devorah said. “Let’s let him do it for as long as he wants.” I realized then, that yes, that’s exactly right. What’s really fun when you’re a kid is to be able to keep doing that fun thing again and again, and like a joke you play on a two-year-old, it never, ever gets old.