Let go, and enjoy the ride...

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My daughter Erin announced recently that she has no interest in being an adult. I can’t say I blame her – there are days when deciding what to cook for supper and the myriad other responsibilities of being a grown-up are hugely overrated.
But, I was intrigued to know why my seven-year-old was already wise to the ways of the world. “Adults are boring. They sit behind their computers and they don’t have any fun,” she explained. I tried to sway her by listing all the exciting things that she would be able to do one day, such as driving a car and travelling around the world. But she wasn’t convinced. “I don’t want to grow up and have to work all day and never laugh.” Fair point, I thought, and left it at that.
But I felt somewhat saddened that her impression of adulthood may have been tainted by my dispirited attitude to the daily grind. A few days later, we were at a nine-year-old’s birthday party where the children were having an absolute ball on a massive water slide. “Mom, you have to come in with us,” begged Erin. I have to be honest – the thought filled me with dread. What would people think of this 40-something woman flailing down the water slide like a dizzy manatee? And, what if they spotted my wobbly thighs and flabby arms?
I stood at the base of the slide, trying to explain to Erin and Conor that middle-aged moms and slides are not really a good combo, and that they should go down with their friends instead. Then Conor reached for my hand. “Come on, Mom. We don’t give up.” I took a deep breath and climbed up the stairs, trying very hard to not think about the fact that people were probably still listening to tape cassettes the last time I was on a water slide.
But within seconds we were shrieking with laughter as we flew down the slide, and I completely forgot about dimpled thighs and the to-do list that needed to be ticked off before school the next day. “You see, adults can have fun too,” shouted Erin, flushed with excitement. I guess sometimes, we just have to let go a bit and enjoy the ride too.
Anél Lewis has added at least one light-hearted activity to her family’s monthly to-do list, so that they can all be reminded that even adults can have fun and live the good life.

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