Arun was in a great mood. He’d just come back from school and we were talking about his day.
“Sally loves Arun,” he said beaming.
“That’s right – I think Sally does love Arun.” I agreed. Sally is one of the special needs teaching assistants at Arun’s school.
“Daddy loves Arun.” He stated.
“That’s right. Daddy loves Arun very much,” I said giving him a big hug.
He was on a roll and clearly very pleased with himself, “Daddy loves Sally very much!” he ventured.
I laughed. “Daddy likes Sally a lot but doesn’t love her. Daddy loves mummy very much and don’t go telling mummy that daddy loves Sally because mummy will get the wrong idea.”
Arun seemed unconvinced but went with it.
The following day I went into school to pick Arun up. Diane, one of the wonderful nursery nurses in his class came up to me, “It seems we’ve all joined your family.”
The confusion must have been writ large across my face.
She smiled and continued, “Arun’s been calling us all by your surname today. I’m Diane Sisodia, there’s Sally Sisodia, Jeannette’s been Jeannette Sisodia. We’ve been laughing all afternoon.”
“Oh dear,” I said, “not sure there’s room for you all at my house.”
“Oh, we’re quite tickled by the idea,” said Diane with a playful look, “What time is dinner being served tonight? We’ll pop round.”
I shook my head. Arun is very lucky. He loves lots of people in his life. Lots of people love him. I suppose it is only a logical extension that all the people that love him, must love one another. And therefore, they must all be a member of his family.
Somewhere along the road to growing up we lose this innocence and learn to be cynical, guarded and judgemental. We curtail and we ration our capacity to love.
However, sometimes, just sometimes, our children remind us that there is a better way of looking at the world.