My son and daughter spent their days at "Mamaw's House" while their father and I worked. This meant, usually, three to four days per week they played with three other children whose parents also employed Mamaw to provide childcare. The setting was comfortable, non-institutional, and provided them daily experiences similar to what they would have experienced had I been able to be a stay-at-home mom. They played in the backyard, ate breakfast and lunch, took naps, learned to color, count and read, learned to care for the pets (two schnauzers), learned to share, and learned that every afternoon the toy room chores had to be completed before Mom or Dad arrived to pick them up...all toys had to be returned to the BIG BOX.
When I opened the gate to the backyard, it was not unusual to be greeted with, "Guess WHAT MOMMY!!!!"
I dunno about you, but I could NEVER "Guess" what the little minds had fathomed or in what silliness they had engaged. I could ALWAYS tell when Kool-Aid had been part of the lunch or snack, as the level of exuberance was always elevated on those days.
It was on just such a Kool-Aid day that I reached Mamaw's House and was greeted with
"Guess WHAT MOMMY!!!!"
"Mommy!!! I want to be a TRASH MAN when I grow up!!"
"Sure Stephen, you want to drive the truck?"
" NOOOOOOOO!!!! I want to RIDE ON THE BACK!!!"
"Yeah," I thought, "it's been the dream of many in every generation, I'm sure.... then they go to kindergarten and get all 'informed' about the 'good jobs.'"
|Not yet Three...Pondering Life|
with the EVER Present Blankie!
"Mom, I KNOW what I want to be when I grow up!!!"
(Really? Not a TRASH MAN?) "What, Stephen?"
"I want to be 1/2 time a computer programmer (guess what MOM did for a living) and 1/2 time a GLASS BLOWER."
"OK, Stephen, sounds GREAT!!!"
|Age 9 or 10...Just won this Tigger at the|
company picnic and DETERMINED
to save it for HIS little boy
Now, lest you think I am under some delusion that MY children are UNIQUE on this matter, let me assure, I KNOW they are not. I cite, for example, my best friend's daughter who, at age 8 or 9, came bounding up the stairs from my basement where she and my daughter had been "playing", crying her eyes out.
"What's wrong Dee Dee?"
"Jennifer says JOCKIES only earn $1 per YEAR!!!"
"ummmmm....Jennifer? I don't think she knows what jockies earn." (as I scowled at my evil daughter!)
Clearly, Dee Dee had her heart set on being a jockey when she grew up. And my daughter had upset her royally, when she implied she was going to make NO money in her chosen profession!
Nevertheless, MY son was sure of his future and only changed his mind once or twice thereafter..... At 12 years old and pondering the future, he announced he'd decided where he wanted to go to college, I was hesitant to ask...but I did....
"Either YALE or FLORIDA STATE!!!!"
"ummmm OK, I know I'm an FSU grad (GO NOLES!!!!), but.. WHY those two choices?"
"Well, YALE is a good school, but very expensive, and FLORIDA STATE has a GREAT MARCHING BAND!!!"
|Age 15, Marching His Way to FSU???|
Suffice to say, LIFE stepped in and helped change a little boy's aspirations. He is now 29 years old, married to a wonderful woman, does AutoCAD work for a surveying company, lives about an hour from me, performs in local community theater productions, and sings in his church choir and the Virginia Choral Society.
|Senior Prom...Almost 18|
|Age 29 -- On stage last weekend -- BYE BYE BIRDIE|
Does he even remember those early aspirations? Well, I guess I'll ask him... I mean, Geri remembers HER early desire to RIDE THE GARBAGE TRUCK!!!
Thanks for the memories, Geri!