Monday, June 20, 2016

I Want

As soon as Eewok walked through the door, I could tell that she hadn't slept enough the night before. When she hasn't rested sufficiently, Eewok, usually a total mammelah, becomes hair-raisingly self-involved and stubborn. 

"I want you to play cards with me," she demanded. 

I don't negotiate with terrorists. Since she didn't ask properly: "We'll see. Soon." 

"But I want you to play cards!" 

"What is this 'want'? What about what I want? You don't care that I want to read the paper. We don't talk like that."

The afternoon continued, with little progress. "I want." "I want." "I want." Rarely had I heard her use such language. 

Until the dam broke. She had wanted to go to shul with Luke and he remained firmly implacable. Eewok dissolved into tears. "But I want to!" she wailed, refusing to budge. 

"What is this 'want'?" I repeated in exasperation. "You want to be a big girl? Fine. Here it is: You don't get to do what you want." 

"You do!" she bawled. "Adults get to do what they want!" 

"What? That's what you think? Baby, being a grown-up doesn't mean you get to do what you want. Being a grown-up means you don't get to do what you want."

Large tears dripped down her reddened cheeks. She glared at me defiantly. I could almost hear her think, "Liar." 

Classic middle child. She is quite sure there is a conspiracy against her, plotting to keep her miserable and out of the fun. 

Wait till she finds out the truth. I never wanted to be an adult. Because I knew it's awesome to be young, under someone else's care, with no major responsibilities. Why the heck would I want to be an adult? Rochel Spagenthal gets it to. 

But it does have its upside, as she notes. Although "wanting" has little to do with it.  

1 comment:

Daniel Saunders said...

"I want doesn't get" was what I was always told as a child.

One could also take this in the direction of us adults saying to G-d, "I want, I want, I want" and being surprised when we don't get...