Saturday, April 10, 2010

Tell Me A Story

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times....ok....that one has been used before...but they were the best and worst of times all at the same kids were young...very young...barely out of diapers young...ages 4, 4 and 6...and the four of was the four of Joey. Our days were crazy busy, typically starting at six in the morning and ending well past a time that was decent with car runs back and forth to school, preschool, work, daycare, and home....

The house was a combination home/laundry/cafeteria/mortgage shop/kennel/jungle gym...and more than once I cooked dinner while dealing with a crying child and a mortgage client at the same time...usually the crying child was the more rational of the two....and you know something...I miss those days.

The other night, while sitting with my kids in their room, with a warm spring breeze wafting through my apartment...I was reminded of something that we did together one spring during that time...we read The Chronicles of Narnia together...Now I would strongly urge all parents to read Narnia to their kids...the chapters are short enough to hold a five year old's attention and interesting enough to hold an adults. But that is not really the point of this story.

In those days the kids slept in bunk beds, Oliver slept on top and Aidan and Fiona in the double bunk below. Each night I would cram myself between Aidan and Fiona and reach a chapter from Narnia... To be honest with you...most nights I was tempted to hustle the kids off to bed and collapse on the pile of laundry that usually covered my bed. But the four of us were overwhelmed and stressed out...and looking back, reading at night probably helped all of us sleep better.

Reading the Narnia books to my kids is among my very favorite parenting episodes. Maybe it was because of C.S. Lewis' prose or perhaps because these were stories about love, sacrifice, and devotion that made these books and that time I shared with my kids so compelling. Each night, during those months, I read a chapter, the kids listened, and more often than not we all fell asleep together in the same bed. C.S. Lewis helped bring peace, calm, and quiet into our home.

I know people with young children...and young children can be demanding, exasperating, and frustrating all at the same time...I have been there and I get it. However, as we rush about from that errand to this errand constantly looking at the clock and what needs to be done is so very easy to forget how quickly time passes and how soon all of this will end. While I am happy with my two ten year olds and my thirteen year old I do miss the young children they once were...and...there are times when I wish I could get them all into bed and read Narnia to them...

1 comment:

  1. Tom- your post reminded me of the time I discovered Narnia for myself when I was 9 or so, and the joy I had when I started reading it to my 2 oldest. Now it's my youngest's turn. Thanks,