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It is never personal, you're not the protagonist

It's so easy to become offended. It actually comes pretty natural. Someone says something.  You feel it's directed at you Strong reaction follows No need to react, it's got nothing to do with you as a person Imagine some remarks about academic work versus manual one, a bit dismissive about the latter. You don't have a degree and never wanted one. You know very well it takes years of experience and training to do what you're doing. Talent is involved too, as some people do have "two left hands".  You still feel you should add something to the conversation, but not sure if it is going to be well-received. No need to enlighten the other party right now Most people think in terms of opposites. If it's not this, it's that and it can't be anything else. Certainty of one's convictions is also a form of self-reassurance that everything is stable in one's world. Other points of view cannot be allowed because they are disruptive. Cognitive disrup

Kids, adults and time do not go well together

What is not to hate in discovering something too late in life? It is not just resentment against poor timing. It is also a new burden on top of an already heavy load, a life lived, experience and mistakes in one bundle.

Knowledge revealed which could have been so useful 30 or 40 years before, who needs it when almost down to the last mile? Would you like a new source of regret? Here is one, just for you, sing the sarcastic Eumenides. 

The scene could not be more idyllic, waiting for a grandchild to get dressed, with the prospect of a whole new day of outdoor adventures. Gentle prompts are spoken suavely. Total fail.

Maybe going away for a while, under a fake pretence, would work? No, it does not. If the Invisible Man would have left and then returned to the room containing the kid, there might have been some  reaction. Invisible does not mean non-existent.

A small cry of impatience is trying to work its way up the vocal cords, but is suppressed. After all, it's the era of adults managing their emotions and somehow, miraculously, transmitting this art to the little ones.

Unfortunately, some systems are free to do as they please, irritation takes over the wheel and starts making quick advances towards a full-blown reaction. 

It involves counting aloud how many times the adult request came and gone, ignored, how the clock is ticking away and busses or trains will be missed. Weather forecast is not  forgotten either.

Then, just before words start falling out, the INSIGHT. The grandchild is fully immersed in play, which is on timeless territory. And it is serious play, with "pretend" roles and full costume. 

In that realm of total focus, such an enviable state, no one can hear or respond to anything that is not part of the scenario. Or they could, but they are not prepared to relinquish bliss for mundane. As bliss it is, only hypocritical adults would deny they cannot remember what playing felt like.

Should a grown-up wait respectfully till the game comes to a natural close? Categorically yes.

So many conflicts would be avoided if adults would admit that they always live one step in the future, while kids, when left to their own devices, are all in the present moment. 

At a closer look, adult future is coloured by fear too, which makes for a rather explosive combination.

Kids, adults and time only go well together if the first two are playing together, and that makes the third party, time, irrelevant.  Doing things together is the second best option. 

If only I had known this a long, long time ago. Still, as a friend once wrote, we have to deserve our 'road to Damascus' moment. 




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