Posts Tagged ‘inner child’

The Joys of Adult Children

I mean that title as a double-entendre, because this week is steeped in both meanings: I spent a long Father’s Day weekend in San Francisco being an adult child — musing nostalgically around the city and Marin, the landscape of my early childhood — and am now spending a couple of days responding to my grown daughter’s call for Mama time. Childhood is never really over for any of us!

Feeling fancy with John at the Opera House

Feeling fancy with John at the S.F. Opera House

While up north spending time with my stepfather, John, I was struck by how vividly present our child-selves can become at any time. The uncannily specific, shockingly reminiscent salt-and-flora scent that wafts through Sausalito and Tiburon… the unmistakable noise-skein of San Francisco streets (cable cars, electric buses, foghorns in the distance)… and the “this is home” sound of John’s bass-baritone voice… all conspired to snag me back to my youth.

I say it often: the trip-wires we all have back to our childhood can be one of the biggest challenges in parenting. We can easily find ourselves responding not as the adults we supposedly are, but as the teen… the tween… the toddler that is suddenly and unexpectedly awakened in us through proximity to reminders of our own past — the most powerful of which is our own children.  (more…)