Family

First Grader Wisdom

        I mentioned before that I enjoy writing letters to my young boys – little snippets for them to perhaps read one day, or merely for my own therapy. Isaac, my seven-year-old, did something recently that keeps coming back to mind. I thought I’d share a bit of my therapy with you.

        It’s been said that the biblical admonition to “pray without ceasing” is another way of saying “Live in the moment. Stay present at all times.” We almost never do this, do we? Humans are great at rehashing the past and pointlessly blueprinting potential futures, but where it comes to the present, we are hopelessly lost most of the time. I think little Isaac gets it better than most of us: 

        We’ve just now come from eating lunch together. You love cracking open fortune cookies, and the one you opened today was quite appropriate for you, I think.  

        This seems right to me. You’ve demonstrated an aptitude early on of laying down slabs of wisdom at very unexpected moments. Maybe it isn’t the moments which are unexpected, but the fact that the wisdom emits from someone young, not only in years, but frankly, in behavior. One second, you may be throwing a tantrum because your video game isn’t working right, and the next, you’re uttering universal factoids that many humans grow old and die before successfully grasping.  

        Last week after church, we went out for ice cream. As we sat in the Baskin & Robbins, licking cones – mine topped with German chocolate ice cream and yours with rainbow swirl – you asked, with bluish cream dribbling down your chin, “Are you enjoying your ice cream, Dad?” After receiving my emphatic answer of “yes”, you continued asking the same question of everyone at the table. 

        This may seem inconsequential to you, but you must understand how rare this thing is that you were doing. You were present. You were experiencing the moment, savoring that moment. Better still, you were inviting the rest of us to do the same. 
        “Are you enjoying your ice cream, guys?” 
        Yes, the ice cream was wonderful, but not so much as the company, my boy. 
  
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