Sometimes silliness is all the world needs.
Sometimes the cure for the war with the gremlins in your head is a death-match in a moon bounce with 4 mini-warriors (age 4-8) who morph into lions and gods and super heros and tackle you and demand hugs and monster-like growls so they can have the excuse to tackle you again. Eventually the only thing to do is surrender.
Max and I went to a party on Saturday night. A party with a moon bounce. The kids had an hour of hilarity before the sun went down before they tromped in to settle down for the night. After all the kids had settled in in front of the movie, Max came and pulled me from my fire side chat with the civilized adults. He whispered conspiratorially, “Mom, I want to bounce some more.”
“Ok,” I said and excused myself to supervise, even though it was dark. A parked car was providing light Max told me. And the moon too. “Why not,” I thought. How often is one in the presence of a giant castle made of rubber and air.
Max climbed in and turned around. “You coming?” he asked as though the answer was already clear. I shrugged. I took off my grown-up shoes and crawled in after him. A boy can’t bounce alone.
Tumbling, and falling down and getting up and laughing. He is Lord Poseidon, God of the Sea and I am Kronos the Titan king. He is a dog and I am a cat. He is a summo wrestler superhero and I MUST be taken down. He is pure joy. Radiant like the moon that allows me to see him in the shadows as he prepares to bounce once more into my arms.
Later, after dinner he finds me again in front of the fire. “Mom, a bunch of us want to go back outside but we need a grown-up.” There are four shining expectant faces looking up at me. It is mission impossible and I am their last hope. I put down my glass, my plate of finger food and head for the door, assuring the parents that a responsible adult will supervise. I hoist the little ones in, Max crawls in last. He looks behind me with a look on his face I wish I could bottle–I look that says, “I dare you not to bathe in joy”. “You coming?” he says. “Absolutely” I say answering his challenge as I hoist up my dress and kick off my shoes.
The way to tame the gremlins inside is to simply jump. Jump high. Jump until your skirt threatens to fly over your head. Jump until the laughter is so loud that you draw the crowd away from the warm toasty inside, as they all comes to see what is so marvelous that five voices laugh like 50.
Later that night as I was snuggling Max before sleep, he whispers to me, “Mama. That was the most fun I have had in years.” I kiss him on the forehead and hold my whole life made right, made whole, made complete.