I appear to have lost the front seat of my car again.
Now that Lauren is a big girl of 9 she insists on riding in the front seat, which – according to her – is perhaps the single most exciting experience of her entire life, or at least that part of it which has happened in the last week or two. She bounces. She twists around to look out of all the windows, admiring the newly expansive view that one gets in the front seat. She aimlessly taps on what various buttons of the dashboard are within reach, which gives the car the appearance of something snipped from Mike’s New Car from the outside. She is at one with the world.
Tabitha is less sure about all this.
For several years now she has had the front passenger seat all to herself. This put a physical barrier between her and her younger sister that all middle-school kids appreciate, and generally made her world a better place. Losing that island is rather a blow.
The key will be devising a system by which the front seat can be shared.
Right now we’re working on an “alternating days” type of scenario, which I can already see is going to be difficult to maintain for the uncomplicated reason that I can barely remember what day it is today and cannot reasonably be expected to remember what day it was yesterday when called upon to resolve the inevitable disputes. So eventually we may resort to flipping coins. Or possibly random declarations of turns, which will satisfy me but probably not them. Children want justice; parents just want peace.
It has been a long and draining semester, and most nights it's all I can do to fall into bed for what little time I can stay there after yet another day of scrabbling to keep up with demands. I don’t remember the last time I was as excited about anything as Lauren is about the simple fact of being three feet further forward. I’m in that car all the time – it all sort of blends to me.
It’s nice to be reminded of simple joys, now and then.