It’s an overcast day and a cool breeze is blowing through the backyard. Cool is relative here as both kids are currently in their bathing suits running through the grass, chasing bubbles they have blown. It’s a simple pleasure they enjoy and one that I haven’t had time for recently as it includes a change of clothes when the “bubble juice” inevitable ends up on their clothing.
I covertly sneak out the camera to try and capture a few of these moments for eternity. I manage a couple of pictures before the beauty queen, my five year old daughter, notices the camera. Within a second the scene changes and my five year old is posing in her brightly stripped one piece bathing suit, right leg out in front, hip cocked to the side as though she is Ms. June in a magazine. And I’m disturbed. Where did she learn that? I gave up on being fashionable years ago so there are no magazine floating around the house unless they have recipes or home improvement projects. No pictures of the anorexically thin young girls in the provocative clothes and poses. Is the one hour a day of PBS and Disney television responsible? With the ultra thin, ultra cute, ultra white smiled pre-teens dancing across the screen? Or maybe preschool, where her classmates have older brothers and sisters who have passed down a not so impressive vocabulary that has unfortunately made its way into my home?
All I know is that in that moment I could see that KK was not going to be five forever and it disturbed me. How many moments do I miss just in the business of the day? What do I fail to see when I’m running around trying to throw together a healthy dinner that they will eat and I won’t be sweeping off the floor? Or when I ask for just one more minute to finish the task at hand? It a cliché about time passing quickly but today I could see it running away with my girl and I didn’t like it.