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My Son Draws Trees

I’ve read a lot of posts this month from parents observing their kids. As a parent of two young ones, I see it in a couple of ways. In one, the parent is quasi-religious in documentation of, and reflection on, every moment like a monk who has given up all worldly things except a Facebook account and blog. On the other hand, a good observation is still a good observation. The idea that these parents have nothing to live for but their kids can be countered by the kind of observation that cuts through the chorus in pews posting breakfast, lunch and dinner pics of their kid on a Tuesday. I’m not always sure what that kind of observation is going to send me into deep meditation, but I’ve read a lot of them through the years of Slicing, and I’m grateful.

They are the images of the little kindnesses young people innocently engage in – a child reading a parent’s attempt to disassociate into a depression and using her little arms to hug away the hurt. Or they capture the kinds of sacrifices adults will make in loving unconditionally – the way a grandmother can walk all over a zoo for her grandson before slamming a 1000mg of Ibuprofen and going to sleep before dinner.

I’m not sure what to write about today, but I’m surrounded by parenthood on a Saturday morning, and Instagram probably wouldn’t do justice to the following:

  • a stuffed animal on the kitchen table that traveled to and from school yesterday and has dried spit on its muzzle after my daughter chewed on it when an adult got down to her level yesterday and started asking her questions
  • a partially opened box of Cabritis from a March Madness Friday night frenzy of ice cream, beer, and giant pot of popcorn
  • my son’s drawing of an oak tree using a whiteboard marker on a white tile in the kitchen. The root system reaches as far down into the earth at the crown of the tree reaches skyward. He has added a single limb with a swing. The trunk bends in this human way that reminds me of The Giving Tree. Beside it, he has written April 9th. He has a big plan. And he wants it to root down in the jumble of grocery lists and todos that surround it.
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12 thoughts on “My Son Draws Trees

  1. Hi, Do you live in Chile? I lived there in 1994, and it forever changed me. I love the three poignant vignettes you shared. There’s something about popcorn on a Friday night that is oh so powerful. I love the details of the spit-stained muzzle and the far-reaching roots. You do a great job showing that the universal is in the details. Thank you. Kate Narita

    Liked by 1 person

    1. We have lived here for 4-years! It has changed us too. I imagine that your 1994 experience was very different based on the political situation the country faced during that time.

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  2. Everyone has their writing territories, and children provide a lot of inspiration. They also love to read about themselves at later times in their lives. Your daughter might find her chewing habit to be hilarious one day…

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  3. I like how you ponder parental observations and then move into recording your own. Also, you have me thinking that so many things in life are rooted, ” in the jumble of grocery lists and todos that surround it.” Great slice!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. It’s funny though how our writings and postings capture our “here and now.” After 13 years of slicing, I relish the anecdotes that I’ve captured about my kids at those younger ages… it’s all a blur now. Thank you for sharing.

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  5. What a sentence…”In one, the parent is quasi-religious in documentation of, and reflection on, every moment like a monk who has given up all worldly things except a Facebook account and blog.” 🙂 This is such a reflective slice!

    Liked by 1 person

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