My kids are taking karate. They really enjoy it. My son enjoyed it the first day but then was afraid he’d have to stand in front of the class and bow and so stopped for a bit. Then he decided he wanted to do it again.
Wednesday night, they were doing their thing on the floor, in lines kicking and punching and kiai-ing, and I was sitting on the floor along the sidelines reading. I glance up periodically to see how their doing, but generally I’m engrossed in my book.
This is different from when they were younger. When they first were in sports ~ gymnastics, soccer ~ I would sit and watch them the whole time, sometimes proudly watching what they were accomplishing and other times cringing at them not paying attention or some other thing. I don’t think I’m the only parent who has done this.
I’m still fascinated by what they do, but now sometimes it’s the only little snippets of time I get to read ~ while they’re doing their thing.
So Wednesday I was particularly engrossed. I’m reading the third book in the Song of Ice and Fire Series (A Storm of Swords) so I'm totally in. Suddenly, someone loomed up in front of me. I glanced up. It was my daughter.
“Mommy,” she said. “Why aren’t you watching us?”
“Cause I’m reading my book,” I said. “Go back onto the floor.”
She hesitated and then went.
Well, isn’t that the eternal question, one of the most basic things of human nature: Why aren’t they all watching us? Cause they’re hoping we’re watching them.