As a mother, I feel I take up too much space.
We are too loud; we are unruly; we are not welcome in this place.
Any place. A public space.
A space created for old and young a like, and neither you nor I decide who is in and who is out.
But I feel it.
I feel the stares of judgement; the glares of inconvenience.
The tapping of feet and the tsking of tongues.
And so I try to shrink.
I ask silence of my kids; although they are just being kids.
I demand they settle; although they are just doing what kids do: move and laugh and enjoy being alive.
I ask my kids to shrink. To take up less space. To become invisible.
For to take up less space is to cause less trouble.
To not inconvenience, nor disturb nor bother the people who have less grace.
To be invisible is to be safe.
I want my children to be safe.
Yet, I want my kids to grow.
To flourish with more grace and compassion than those who tsk.
To find strength, resilience and a determination to be authentic regardless of what anyone says.
So no, the children will not shrink.
The children will be loud. They will be unruly.
They will move and laugh and enjoy being alive.
They will be kids. And they will grow.
Perhaps it’s time us adults grew too.