“I like nonsense; it wakes up the brain cells.” Dr. Seuss
This is a story about a girl and her magical foot. Or, maybe it’s just about imagination and how we should protect that in our children as much as possible. First of all, the story of the magical foot.
Mom was trying to gather up the kids and get them out the door to go somewhere. It might have been for volleyball practice or a game or a homeschool field trip or something else entirely but it was definitely something to not be late to. Our Lil Bit (3 years old), was dawdling and mom had to jump in and help push her along to get her shoes and socks on. The conversation went something like this:
Mom: Let’s get your shoes and socks on because we have to go.
Bit: Don’t put THAT sock on, my foot is magical.
Mom: (eye roll) C’mon kid, we need our socks and shoes on.
Mom then places the offending sock on “magical” foot.
Bit: How could you! Now my magical powers have been stripped. Why do you hate me!
Now, this is not an unusual occurrence in our home. Our kids have all had great, vibrant imaginations. At least three have had long lasting relationships with imaginary friends and we have caught several having in depth conversations, alone in a room, with these friends.
We are not necessarily certain of how this has been accomplished with our kids but we do know that we love this aspect of them. We do everything we can to keep that spark alive. As Robin Williams once said, “You’re only given a little spark of madness. You mustn’t lose it.” This “spark of madness” leads to creativity which leads to creation of fantastic and wonderful moments. Our Peanut (12) is growing into quite the illustrator and our Boy Wonder (9) creates things with Legos that boggle my mind. G-Man (6) is our “least” creative child at this point but is the most social, charismatic child in the history of ever. He makes friends at the drop of a hat and tells all manner of stories and as he learns to read and write, may become our writer.
You see, we have no idea what our children will become. We have dreams, hopes and aspirations for them of course but life still has many pages to turn before we or they will know for sure. What we do know, is that their imaginations, their creativity, their madness so to speak, will take them further than any math facts or history date memorization. These things all have value and are taught along with boring grammar and how to type, but in all of it, their imagination is fostered.
So take the time to let their spark grow, even if it means taking an extra minute that you don’t really have, to cast a spell with them on their socks so that they can keep the magic, just a little longer.