You can relate if you're a parent. Times like I'm going to relate make your heart swell if you're a dad, but will also make you want to intervene when you know you shouldn't.
The youngest of my two girls I was raising by myself made a big deal out of saying she wanted to take a bath and wash her hair. It was probably not a big thing if it were a late afternoon, and she was crusty with mud as usual. This wasn't the case. It was only eight in the morning, and my little wonder was asking for a bath and hair wash.
Okay, I'm good for it. I filled the tub and followed up with a good head wash while my daughter held her eyes closed to keep the soap from her eyes, but to also enjoy the head massage. She informed me she was going to dress herself when she was dry.
Okay, I can live with that. Her and her older sister usually knew what they wanted to wear. It wasn't a case of modesty, as I was informed of this by a very naked barely five-year-old.
Sweet Connie came out about ten minutes later in one of her Sunday dresses, complete with her hair brushed and shiny patent leather shoes. She moved her small rocker around to face the front door and sat in the chair moving back and forth with a determined look on her face.
As a single father parent, you learn early not to interrupt little girls when they are on a mission or when something's up. I had no clue as to what was happening but I knew I was going to keep a close watch.
It was now only nine in the morning, and the youngest was swinging back and forth in her kid-size rocking chair, waiting for something that I hoped was coming.
My phone rang and I grabbed the portable to quickly answer it. Sharon, a single mother from down the street asked, "Hi, Jim, this is Sharon. Is it okay if Greg brings something over for Connie?"
I spoke softly so it didn't carry out to Connie, "I hope it's what she's waiting for. She's sitting in her rocking chair staring at the door."
"Oh geez, Jim, I also hope it's what she's waiting for. Greg went nuts looking for just the right thing last night, and got all cleaned up by himself this morning. I'm wondering if this is really my kid. I'll walk him down so watch for us."
It was easy to look out the big window in the living room and watch Sharon and Greg walking down the sidewalk. Connie didn't see them as she was only focused on the door. Greg wanted to run, then slowed to a very slow walk, and then ran again, as his indecision about how he really felt pulled at his emotions.
I watched them walk up to the door and heard the 'Ding Dong' of the doorbell.
My little Connie was out of her chair and to the door in an instant. She knew the rules and looked around to see if I was there and waited for my nod of approval.
Connie swung the door open and gaped at Gregg, without ever recognizing that his mother was with him, before saying, "Happy Valentine's Day, Gregg." She whipped a card out from behind her and stuck it out at him.
Greg was messed up now. He probably had it all planned that he would be the first to act, but Connie had beat him to it.
Sharon moved around to the side of the action as Greg was still in the doorway, with Connie in front of him. She came to stand with me, holding onto my arm watching the two kids.
It was Connie that broke the impasse. "Come in, Gregg, come into the living room."
Sharon and I looked at each other, trying to figure out where these five-year-olds learned how to be cordial. We watched as the two kids shut the door, went to the living room, and climbed up on the couch where none of their feet touched the floor.
Instead of staying seated, Greg got down and stood in front of Connie. He turned beet red, before finally saying in rushed manner, "Here, this is candy for you, and this is a Valentine card. I hope you like them."
I thought Sharon would soak my shirt with the tears running down her face, but she hung on to my arm and whispered. "That is so sweet, Jim. God, I wish they could stay this innocent forever."
.... There is more of this story ...