So you’d think, when I need a little help, they would be delighted. Far from it. One, and I won’t say which one, can barely contain a snarl when I ask him to explain how you move a picture out of the iPhoto file into a word document (that would be this file, and soon you might see the photo.) Okay, so I’ve asked him to explain it about ten times. So? How many times did I explain how the earth goes around the sun? or why we don’t bite strange children? These are far larger, more complicated, and deeply consequential issues than how you drag a square into a rectangle, if you ask me. If you ask them, I’m dumb. Thank goodness for friends; poor Frances has been patiently emailing explanations of the dragging thing for the last two hours.
Or perhaps, secretly, in some small part of the loved child’s heart, is the fear that mom is getting old, too old to keep up with technology, too old to understand the simplest, most rudimentary movements of everyday media. This means that the roles are being reversed--son has to teach mom, rather than mom teaching son, and that means that son’s generation will soon be ruling the world, operating on us, and doing our tax returns. They’re already reaching for our jobs, no? Good thing, too.
But please, a little patience, a little humility, a little remembrance of times past, when it was your own chubby fist grasping hold of a crayon, rather than my freckled hand on the keyboard, trying to grab hold of a rectangle that doesn’t really exist, dragging it into a document that doesn’t really exist, so that I can show it to readers who might want to see it--though, luckily, they do exist, even if I can’t see them. Kind of like what happens to the stars at the end of the night. As I once explained to a trusting four year old, they’re still there, up in the sky, all day, even if you can’t see them, and they see you, and twinkle down and shower you with luck. I suppose the next thing I’ll have to teach my sons is how to be kind to their elders, who will always be there, twinkling them with love.