Wednesday, June 24, 2009

"Mommy, you JUST gotta see this!!!"

When I hear these words, typically shouted at ear-piercing volume and with a level of immeasurable excitement, I know that I am about to see a dead insect, some sort of animal droppings, a "treasure" (translation: bottle cap, stick, leaf, or, in one instance, a hardened piece of gum someone had spit out on the sidewalk), or a fat, squishy, slimy, disgusting slug. My boys know that slugs seriously gross me out (thanks to Daddy, who thinks it's hilarious), so they take advantage of every opportunity to watch me squirm by either bringing me outside to view a slug, or by showing up with a slug grasped in one of their sticky little hands. Now, I do my best to show enthusiasm every time one of my little guys wants me to see something "amazing". I really do want to nurture their excitement and exploration of the world, and I'm continually surprised and delighted by their enthusiasm for the smallest discovery. With that said, I reluctantly admit that there are times when I hear the call (for the 20th time in one day) and just don't feel like being dragged over to see another squished spider or patch of bird poop. So, a few days ago, when I was finally getting around to washing my face and brushing my teeth (at 10:30 in the morning), and I heard my youngest son calling from the back porch, "Mom, Mommy, Moooooommmmmmm......You just gotta see this! C'mon, c'mon, come out here. Mommyyyyyyyy!!! You really gotta see this!", I heaved a sigh, rolled my eyes, and slowly, reluctantly dragged myself outside to see the latest discovery. And, this is what I saw... My beautiful, mud-splattered youngest son, wearing his Spiderman pajama top, green boxer shorts, and his beloved ladybug rainboots, standing completely still (an amazing event all by itself) in a patch of sunlight, blue eyes shining with excitement, a gigantic grin stretching from ear to ear, with a big, yellow and black butterfly perched on his grimy little hand, delicate wings gently opening and closing. It was a wonderful moment. And, while my little ones consider a bead or a fallen leaf or a chunk of dirt a treasure, the memory of Foster standing in the sunlight with that butterfly on his hand, is something I will treasure forever. So, the next time I hear the call, I'll head outside with an open mind and an enthusiastic smile, ready to share in my children's excitement. Unless it's a slug.


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