reinhard_sarahI never have a problem finding my car in a parking lot, despite it being a popular make and model.  I have my four-year-old to thank for that.

When she was two, she discovered the joy of stickers.  At about the same time, she learned that they stick very well to the car window.  Not only was this immediately gratifying, but it also gave her hours of enjoyment during car rides.

"Horse!" she’d say, until I would respond.  Then she’d move on to the next animal, cartoon character, or shape.

Honestly, it has never bothered me to have stickers on my car window.  To me, those stickers aren’t a blemish on my car or a habit to be broken.

What I see on that car window is hope and optimism.  I see proof that a little girl with an appreciation for beauty rides with me on almost every trip.  I see a changing vocabulary, a growing ability to decorate, and a lingering of childhood.

In the car of my life, I sometimes forget the small touches that make the ride fun.  I scorn loud laughter, dorky jokes, and unfettered enthusiasm for quiet smiles, cool comments, and silence.

Why am I always trying to be someone I’m not?  How can I learn to embrace the beauty in life from my preschooler?

She’s already growing up faster than I can manage.  I’ll leave the stickers on my window for a little longer.  Maybe I’ll even add a few of my own.

Copyright 2009 Sarah Reinhard