Shut Up And Eat Your Meatballs

In the spirit of Jan and New Year, I said to Pix, “If I asked you what “living the dream” was … what would you say?”

Pix shrugged. She then leaned over and helped herself to last of the sliced pitta breads from the plate on the table and dipped it in her meatball juice. After a few moments chewing, she glanced up at me in surprise and realising I was suspended in bated breath animation awaiting the answer, she quickly threw me one out of the bag.

“To be happy.”

I crinkled my nose. “Okay – cool, but this is Living The Dream here, Pix … Imagine a year from now you are Living The Dream. What would that look like to you?”

This was a game. It was a game of make believe. I was intrigued to know what Living The Dream meant to PIx now she was 13 and practically in charge of the world.

Pix chewed more pitta bread and shrugged again.

She wasn’t into playing.

She was into meatballs.

“My life would be amazing.”

Hmm. Fob-off answer.

I picked up my fork again and prodded some lettuce. “That’s not what I mean really.”

Pix swallowed her pitta, glanced around the table for what else she could eat and homed in on the buffalo mozzarella and beefsteak tomato salad then reached over her hand and popped a piece into her mouth. But before she did, she added in the casual tones of a girl whose recently turned thirteen, “To be honest Mum, I’m not really into predicting my life. I just like to see what turns up.”

“Its not about predicting your life. Its about creating it,” I said.

Then I shut up and thought about what she’d said.

You know, I am all about having my kids think for themselves, having their own minds, their own opinions and their own beliefs. I am all about them being on their own journey of experience in this adventure called life and respecting what they think and hearing what they say and learning from their perspectives. Then there are some moments when they say something and you realise that they do actually (sometimes) have a clarity of perception that as adults we have somehow dirtied up. And that wisdom is worth taking on board.

What I heard from Pix was this: “Stop being preoccupied with the future when there is this delicious present moment all around you.”

Or, in other words, “Shut Up and Eat Your Meat Balls Mum.”

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