From a Child's Eyes—by Jamie Levine
A few nights later, I took Library Guy to see my favorite local funk band, which I haven’t seen play since I became a mother. It was their 25th anniversary concert, and, at the risk of aging myself, I must admit I started going to their shows at least two decades ago. Back in the day, their concerts never started before 10:30 p.m., and, after a long intermission and two music-packed sets, the show would go on until the middle of the night. But this time, the concert was called for 7:30, and while I doubted the band would get on stage by then, I was pleased that it wouldn’t be an all-nighter. Library Guy had gotten a baby-sitter and my parents were watching Jayda, and neither of us was planning to stay out too late. But when the band did go on at 7:30—and played straight through to 10:00, and then said “goodnight,” I was shocked. The show ended earlier than it used to begin.
Library Guy and I lingered for a little while with some friends of mine, and then left the club, only to find a long line of teenagers wrapped around the building; a D.J. was going on at 11:00—and hoards of hipsters were just getting their night started. As we got into his car, Library Guy complained that his ears were ringing; so were mine. He drove me straight home, kissed me goodnight, and when I texted him later from bed saying I was bummed we weren’t together, he complained about his ears again. Afterwards, I called a friend to recount my night; she remembers how much I used to crush on one of the musicians in the band, and how I always raced over to talk to him before a show. I told her that this time, he greeted me, “Hey, Momma!” and gave me a big hug as I responded, “Hey, Daddy.” We both have children now, and, though we did spend a few minutes reminiscing about the past, we mostly talked about how tired we are now, the challenges of parenting, and especially, how much we love our kids. And I happily walked away from him straight into Library Guy’s arms.
The next morning, when I saw Jayda, she asked about my night. I told her Library Guy and I had spent a really fun evening together—and that we’d even danced. “Did he kiss you, too?” Jayda asked. When I told her “yes,” she clapped her hands enthusiastically and grinned from ear to ear. I couldn’t help but smile back. I just wish I could always view the world—and my life—from my child’s sparkling eyes.