This weekend at the Anime con I saw my near future. We were one of a handful of parents there, since our daughter was on the young side of attendees. I felt old and out of place, tired and interested in the topics and entertainment only as a visitor, not a participant. As much as I want to be into everything and there with Madigan, that’s not how it works.
The world and all that it has to offer, is hers to discover, with out me/us. (Let that sink in)
It hit me like a brick when the kids were singing karaoke, in a 1 hour time span I only knew 2 songs, one was a creepy cover of an 80s song. At one point, when something happened the kids started the “one of us” chant. I know the reference comes from a black and white movie called Freaks. But theses kids know it as South Park reference. I was half offended that these 20 and unders didn’t know the history of this quote, where it came from and that it’s not a a funny cartoon reference but a dark pivotal point in a movie older than me …BUT for them it is a South Park reference. And there it is.
Music, art, comedy, love, passion all these thing that we over 20 folks have discovered and owned forEVER is brand new to them. They haven’t had catch phrases that mean something to them, inside jokes, songs that speak to their soul, loves of their lives, ownership of their own interests vs just doing what your parents will allow, discovering a band no one else knows about…she is standing right there, toes touch the line. I remember when it happening to me, unaware what it meant when I was there, but I remember the breaking away.
Madigan is going to discover a band that rocks so hard, or has a dreamy guitarist, or funny clever lyrics. This will be all she talks about, and she will be convinced that no band HAS EVER ROCKED IRREVERENTLY or BEEN AS DREAMY or AS FUNNY AND CLEVER as this band she discovered…(squeeeeeee). But they have, I could give her examples because I discovered the Sex Pistols, Duran Duran and the Dead Milkmen. In fact I could give her examples for each decade. I could, but I won’t. Because she deserves this, the feeling of discovering the best band, book, art, food, friend, spouse…she gets that win without her parents.
She hasn’t said it, but I know it will be thought or said, and I will paraphrase. I will never be able to understand her love of whatever thing she loves so deeply, because when it first happens to you, it feels so unique, it’s all you and only you can understand the depth of that love. I am excited for her to experience that, but I know it’s a solo act.
I am not sure I am prepared for this, but I hope we are kind to each other, understanding and considerate.