To be a memorable child care provider, you need to have an exceptional memory of your own childhood. I didn’t know it then, but I was an odd child.
When I was a kid, there were no videos or iPods available for long car rides. My mom did a great job reading to us and starting sing-along sessions but the extra long rides still had long boring parts. I made up my own entertainment for those.
“Forever“, to most kids, is the number of days it takes to get to Christmas after Halloween. But, I had an unusual relationship with time. Much later in life I’d learn that I have Spatial Sequence Synesthesia. It’s an internal 3D view of time. Quite fascinating and more evidence of my oddness.
Forever was the real deal to me. It meant “never, ever, again”. I don’t believe there’s such a thing as “forever” while moving forward in time. There’s always more to come. Forever exists where you leave things behind. It’s permanent. The past is forever… but the future holds infinite possibilities.
I called my game “Never Again”. At some point along the trek, we’d be traveling through places I wouldn’t be returning to. I’d choose small details outside of my window. A bird in flight, or a tiny broken branch on tree, might capture my attention. The smaller the detail, the better. “Never going to see that again.” I’d whisper. There was a magical sense of wonder in my private observation. I had paid attention to something insignificant and made it a part of me. I could possibly be the only person in the whole world to see it! How special is that?!
Later on, I’d recall that collection of forevers. Did the bird survive to have offspring? Had the branch fallen right away or was it hanging there, still? What might cause it to fall? A deer escaping a hunter?
To this day, I’ve not outgrown that sense of wonder about forevers. At our camp, I’ve recently found a treasure trove of fossils. Each one gives me a thrill. Am I the first human to EVER lay eyes on this? Did a dinosaur step on it? What caused the fossil to be right where I could find it?
This is precisely the weirdness from whence my love of writing and children developed. I realized, even as a child, that everyone and everything has a story. If I didn’t know that story, I surely could imagine one.
When it comes to my day care children, I feel blessed to be a caption, maybe a chapter, in each of their stories.
The possibilities are still infinite!
Have a great day and thanks for giving this post the opportunity to be “blip” in your story. 😉