Occasionally we go to McDonald’s for a happy meal. You know, for special occasions (special occasions might be a play date with Daddy but also include nights I haven’t made it out into the freezing slushy, muck to get groceries.) It’s a bonus when the free toy is something really cool, like a few weeks back when my three-year-old Cole got a Batman figurine. It had little wings that attached into the back, not very securely of course, but he was enjoying it immensely. For the next few days he wanted to bring Batman everywhere with us. Seeing how much he enjoyed his new action hero I felt torn. I wanted to say, “Sure bring it!” knowing it would keep him happy and entertained. On the flip side I knew that it was only a matter of time before the wings fell off into a pile of something, never to be retrieved, so I felt a need to guard us from the sadness that would surely follow.

A few days later I’d given the go-ahead to bring Batman on the bus and as I knew they would, the wings fell off. Not just under the seat, but through the middle accordion section onto the street below. I don’t know what pile it landed in, but the never to be retrieved part had come to pass. He cried and whined and asked me to look again. I tried to explain that looking around on the bus floor would do no good, because the wings were a few blocks back on the street, maybe they had even been knocked off by the passing cars into the river. This made him more sad of course. I don’t know why I try to be reasonable and tell it like it is, it never works! Instead I should take a lesson from my kids. A few minutes later he started playing with his toy again, making him fly, using sound effects that must come standard with little boys, because he’s never heard me make such a realistic noise when I try to pretend I’m flying. He came to me and said,

“Mom it’s okay that Batman’s wings got lost. He can still fly.”

“Oh, really?”

“Yeah, because Batman is magic, like Santa.”


  1. Melissa

    February 10, 2009

    I love how kids compensate for the difficulties of life. They are the best at making lemonade out of lemons.

  2. Jennie

    February 10, 2009

    Every time I try to shield my kids from something bad, I have to pause and remember that those lessons of disappointment and pain are some of the most important to learn. I’m pretty sure my kids bounce back faster than we do (although I’m still really bummed about my brother cutting the hair off my Ballerina Barbie.)

  3. Carly

    February 10, 2009

    classic life lesson out of the mouth of babes. sometimes we need to hear someone remind us to pick ourselves up and move on because it’s all going to be work out….plus a little belief in magic helps!

  4. Claudia

    February 10, 2009

    That’s great. Oh to be young again.

  5. Heather H.

    February 11, 2009

    Jennie-Barbie ballerina is just not the same with short hair!

    My husband is always trying to remind me to go with the flow, not stress so much, etc. because things work out, we get through it.

    Beyond that, like you said Jennie, Carly and Melissa, we usually learn something along the way and hopefully gain useful skills too.

  6. Emily M.

    February 12, 2009

    Great story, Heather. And every time I hear you talk about little kids in the big city, I am in awe of your city mommy prowess.

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