• “Sometimes the questions are complicated and the answers are simple. Dr. Suess

Monday, January 17, 2011


At church yesterday a bright eyed little girl stood peeking over the pew in front of us.  She watched us with great interest and tried every way imaginable to engage us in play.

Her mother, and her grandmother, tried their level best to get her to sit quietly and not 'bother' us - even when we whispered she wasn't.

At one point I touched my finger to my lips and then folded my arms. She was looking me directly in the eye and I smiled at her as I looked back.  My husband had winked at her a few times and given her back toys or books that were 'dropped'. She glanced at him a few times but he was looking at the speaker.  I too looked at the speaker.

She looked at me.  She continued to look at me. She was slightly in my line of sight and I could see her watching me.  She stood raptly as if in a trance.  Her mother turned to see what she was looking at - I gave no indication that I noticed.  Her mom turned back around after a second or two with a bit of a puzzled expression.  I don't think it mattered a lot what Missy Bright Eyes was looking at as long as she was quiet and calm. I remember those days.

The child stood there, wriggling once in a while (but never taking her eyes off me) for a minimum of 5 full minutes.  I couldn't stand it! I NEVER hold still that long.  I jot notes or some other appropriate 'fiddling' to prevent myself from standing up, yelling, or running out of the building.  I picked up my pencil.

Miss Bright Eyes instantly took my movement as permission to do like wise - to move - and continued to watch me!

(What? How can I fiddle now? Excuse me but how can you hold so still for so long? You are 2 or less! Let me pinch you and take you out in the hall to run around.)

I read in her eyes - we were locked in rapt gazing again - that my irreverence would be permission for hers so instead of writing I folded my hands quietly over the pencil wondering how long I would be held captive.

She continued to watch me until her mother, in an effort to sit more comfortably (and oblivious to the favor she was doing me), shifted enough to that side that she picked the child up from where she stood between mom and grandma, next to the wall, and placed her on the outside edge of the pew.

WHEW! finally I could scribble down all the things rambling around in my head from the speaker and even look up a song in the hymnal and a scripture or two - without intense scrutiny!

Miss Bright Eyes faced forward for a few minutes (in the circle of her mom's arm) and then wiggled around so she could see us again.  I was fine with that.  This time she was face to face with my husband.

He was dozing.


That didn't last long at all.  Soon she was back over between her adults trying to lean far enough over the bench to grab my red pencil. She swung and swung her little arm and stretched and stretched to get that pencil - it was just a smidge out of reach every time! And she was perfectly invisible to me.  I acted like I could not see her at all and she eventually gave up and found other things of interest.

Those eyes are still vivid in my mind.
Miss Bright Eyes is watching me.
I better mind my P's and Q's!