Wednesday, November 17, 2010

life through a child's eyes

Today I showed up for my weekly spot at preschool storytime at the library armed with paper and books about airplanes. I've done this theme before many times and it's always reliable but I wasn't anticipating how it would make me think about things.

With the wintery weather, attendance was sparse, so we opted to make our paper airplanes and helicopter rotors (paper twists) first and then move on to the stories. I'd forgotten how magical a little paper folding can seem in the eyes of a child. They were ecstatic to create their own airplane capable of drifting through the air for a few feet. And watching the paper helicopter blades spiral down was just as exciting for them. Over and over again they climbed the stairs to the balcony level to throw their planes and helicopters over the rail to float down.

Such a simple thing and yet able to bring so much joy. Why do we lose that as we age? And do we really have to? I don't think so. I guess that's why I keep doing storytime even though I'm long out of the toddler stage of parenting. There's something so refreshing watching stories and crafts unfold before a child's eyes. It reminds me once a week that magic does exist and that everyone can take a turn at being the wizard (or witch) once in a while.

Each week as I scramble to get things ready and think of activities to go along with my arbitrary themes, I ask myself if I really want to keep doing this. And then I go and watch their faces and realize I'm not really sure I know how to quit anyway. And maybe it keeps me from losing the magic in my own life, and that's a precious thing.

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