Is there anything more beautiful as the mind of a child? Raising our two children so many years ago they went through a period of amazement at things we as adults take for granted. I was reminded of those moments this weekend while at the kids house. My granddaughter took me to her bedroom where there in front of the window is a wooden chest. On top of the chest was a potted plant with flowers. My granddaughter said “See Papa, pretty pink flowers!” I acknowledged that her flowers were pretty and she said “Nana buy me pretty pink flowers.”
I was not surprised to find out my wife is now populating the kids’ home with flowers since I told her the tropical rain forest known as our home could not take anymore plant life inside. My granddaughter then took me by the hand down to the dining room where an orchid my wife bought them stood proudly on the dining room table.
“See Papa, pretty white flowers!” she said.
“Yep, pretty white flowers baby doll!” I replied.
“Why Baby Doll?” I inquired.
“Papa! My flowers pink, Mama flower white! Why Papa?”
My granddaughter is three months shy of her third birthday and is noticing flowers come in different colors and is curious why it is so. This fact alone surprises me because I think she is too young to be curious of such things. Or is she? Were my own children that curious so young in life and I’ve forgotten over the thirty years since? Then comes the question of how do you explain pigmentation to a two year old child? I took the chicken’s way out; “Nana color Baby Doll’s flowers to make them pretty, but Nana only painted a little bit of Mama’s flowers. But Baby Doll can’t color flowers, Okay?”
She then walked into the living room where my wife was playing with our four month old grandson. She looked at Nana and said “Good job Nana!” I thought I was going to burst my gut laughing. Of course I then had to explain the whole conversation to Nana and my children.
Later Baby Doll looked at me and said “Papa, I need a banai.” Banai is Baby Doll’s way of saying Band-Aid. “Why?” I asked. “Mere Papa, I show you.” Mere is “come here” to her. I followed her out to their deck where there are two potted tomato plants. One of the tomatoes on the vine had a small split in the side. Baby Doll looked at me and said “See Papa, mato has owie!” I understood why she wanted the bandage now, but how do I explain tomatoes don’t need bandages? After a lengthy debate and a small temper tantrum the tomato received a “Hello Kitty” Band-Aid and Baby Doll was happy.
Finally, just before we returned home, Baby Doll was sitting on my lap talking to me when she stopped, reached up, and pulled my glasses off my face. “Baby Doll! Papa needs glasses to see” I told her.
“No glasses Papa.”
“Sweetie, I can’t see without my glasses.”
“No glasses Papa!”
“Why no glasses Baby?”
“I need to see Papa’s eyes!”
“Why do you need to see Papa’s eyes?”
“Because I like Papa’s eyes. Papa eyes blue. I like pretty blue.”
Baby Doll, from the time she was just a baby not even a year old has always liked to look at my eyes without the glasses interfering with the view. Before she could talk, if I looked over the top of my glasses at her would always result in a smile or laughter; now I know why.
This morning sitting here thinking about the events of yesterday caused me to contemplate the thought “What if humans never grew out of that stage of innocence and wonder?” Can you imagine what kind of society we would have if everyone lived life without greed, hatred, envy, and other flaws and only had wonder, amazement and innocent curiosity? The process of analyzing this train of thought brought me to the realization that Utopia does exist, but we grow out of it somewhere around the beginning of the teenage years.