Adventures in making and raising our test-tube babies

Friday, June 13, 2008

Kids Rock

Two days I posted about the kids in the school looking like Easter eggs. Eggs and stones have some similarities. River rocks look like eggs, especially if they've been bleached in the sun. Both eggs and stones are used as euphemisms for certain body parts: never ask a waiter in a Mexican restaurant if he has eggs. Yes. Eggs and rocks seem inherently connected.

So it can be no surprise that one of those pretty Easter egg kids threw a rock through our window.

I found out yesterday at about 3:00 when the most remorseful little girl showed up on my doorstep. She did not knock, but the cat sensed that she was there, so I went to check. I opened the door and she remained silent, couldn't look at me. I thought she'd been in an accident and was asking for help. But her mother was standing halfway toward the street. "Can I help you?" I asked.

That's when the remorseful, very very soft speaking began. She and a boy were playing on the playground. She threw a pebble. She told him to throw a bigger rock. He did. They think they might have broken one of my windows. I asked her and her mother in, and we went to the back yard to check things out. Sure enough, my upstairs bedroom window -- you know the one I look at the gaze longingly at the children during my bedrest -- was smashed into a zillion pieces. When I confirmed that it looked like the window was indeed broken, her little frame shrank even more and the look on her face morphed into, "yes, this is the worst day of my life."

Here's the thing. I really like people. I like unusual situations because they're interesting. I liked my colonoscopy years ago. I liked the time I had a flat tire on the Interstate between New Orleans and East Texas. I liked having my window broken. My cheerful mother came out in my singsong response, "Well, the most important thing is that no one was hurt." The girl silently agreed.

The mom and I exchanged contact information and made a plan of action. I told the little girl that she was very gutsy for having confessed and come over to tell me. I tried not to be TOO happy because that's weird. Later in the day I got a call from the school and from another mother, and they've made it clear they'll pay for the window and will offer up the children for manual labor around the house. I do have some weeds to pull...

But when did I become the adult woman whose house got the rock/baseball thrown in its window? When did I cross the kid-to-adult threshold so clearly? In a movie, there is no doubt that my role would be played by an adult, in stark contrast to the kid role. So if I'm such an adult, why don't I have kids? How come those aren't my kids causing trouble and having to apologize to the people they wronged? I wanted to cling to the little confessor and say, "Don't you want to come live with me? I don't have any kids. I'm child-starved." But that would be way creepy. I think then I'd have to apologize to her mother. And maybe the cops.

So I'll just get secret enjoyment out of my proximity to the school and all the antics that happen there. And this weekend I'll get some little 100-celled trouble-makers installed in me. Maybe they'll grow and prosper and develop their throwing arms.

In the meantime, be assured that only the outside pane of glass got broken. The inside is still in tact, so as long as we don't open it, we're still secure and well-airconditioned.

And looking forward to childhood.


lovestoskip said...

I bet that little girl will always remember you. Because she was terrified of what you might say, and you were nice. What an impact you had on her life!

Anonymous said...

You reacted so well...I wonder how I would have reacted...I bet her sad little remorsefull face would have turned me to jelly.