Friday, 18 March 2011

Learning from Lily

‘Darling?’ We’re barrelling along the road back to school. 

Lily pauses Great Expectations‘Yes, Aged P?’

‘Do you think I should get an eye lift?’


‘But my eyes are almost closing up.’

‘How are they closing up?’

‘Because the lid above is falling down.’

She leans in to scrutinise my eyes. ‘Yeah, that’s happening to Mrs Wordsworth really badly.’

‘So you think I should have one?’

‘Maybe on this one.’ She taps my left cheek.

Bloody hell! She was adamantly against it until I pointed out the defect. I move the conversation on to Meredith. ‘She’s so not a Gray! She always leaves something on her plate. I can’t bear the waste. It makes me wince, like squeaky chalk on a blackboard. It’s almost as bad as littering.’

‘It’s foodering!’ says Lily.

‘Yes, you’re right! It should be outlawed.’

Hmmm. Suspect complaining about one’s friend’s foodering habit not congruent with Niceness. ‘I’ve been working on my Personal Mission Statement,’ I tell Lily.

‘What’s that?’

‘Well it’s a kind of um, statement about what you believe in in life – and once you’ve written it, you’re meant to live your life according to it. Mine's a bit of a blank, frankly, which is rather like the way I’m leading my life, but it’s something to do with being true to yourself and Niceness.’

‘So you’re going to be nice to everyone, including me for the rest of your life, are you?’

‘Do I detect a note of sarcasm in there?’

Are you?’ she taunts.

‘Well I’m going to try. So what do you think yours would be?’

‘Getting rich…’



‘Is that it? Your mission for life? I think it’s meant to include your values. For example being caring to other people, such as your Aged Parent… What about being positive, looking on the bright side, looking forward, having no regrets…?’ Honestly, I should be a life coach!

‘People always have regrets,’ says Lily.

‘Do they?’ I’m not used to my daughter philosophising. ‘What sort of things do you think people would regret?

‘Not getting rich.’

Oh God. This is all my fault. Must stop talking about money, especially now I’ve identified that it is incongruent with my value system. 

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