Michelle: While quarantined at home, I read a very interesting article written by Salma Rumman on how children contemplate marriage. Here are some priceless gems of an answer from the mouth of babes: How would you make your marriage work? “Tell your wife that she looks pretty, even if she looks like a truck,” Ricky, 10; How can a stranger tell if two people are married? “You might have to guess, based on whether they seem to be yelling at the same kids,” Derrick, eight.
DJ: Children have a raw way of looking at things. It’s interesting how when we were kids, we were taught to act and think like adults. Now when we’re adults, we’re being told to look at life from a child’s point of view!
M: Kids are honest (some frightfully so). Now that I have kids, I don’t ask them questions like “Do I look fat?” or “What’s the color of my teeth?” In the article, when kids were asked what most people do on a date, an eight-year-old named Lynette answered, “Dates are for having fun, and people should use them to get to know each other. Even boys have something to say if you listen long enough.”
DJ: This kind of rawness actually makes it both fun and insightful to ask kids what they want to be when they grow up. We can get really good ideas! Life becomes more real as we grow older. Through time we learn to filter our thoughts, listen to people’s opinion and actually believe that it’s wiser to do so. It helps to just look at life as it is. No judgement. No prejudice disguised as a lesson learned. A few weeks ago, I went camping. Among my takeaways from that experience after having been quarantined at home for quite a time is the realization how I’ve complicated things. We work in order to live. We earn money so we can make ourselves and others happy. I’m not sure what happened along the way, why, today, I catch myself living so I can work. I wake up and sleep so I can work. Looking at life as a child would be refreshing. It reminds me to really live and relish life and not just rehearse it.
M: And here’s a classic one that even adults have a difficulty in answering: What is the right age to get married? “Twenty-three is the best age because you know the person forever by then,” Camille, 10. Another question that is mind-boggling for some adults is: Is it better to be single or married? Anita, 9, answered: “It’s better for girls to be single but not for boys. Boys need someone to clean up after them.” Amen to what she said!
DJ: Haven’t you noticed how I kept moving the discussion to matters other than marriage and relationships? Anyhow, I remember how my nephew when he was about eight put me on the spot by asking “Why do you have few hairs on your head?” My sister came to my rescue by saying, “He thinks a lot.” She was so pleased with her clever reply about my receding hairline until my nephew thought for a second and asked, “so why do others have so much hair?” But frankly, I’d rather have these types of questions rather than being asked, “Where were you yesterday?” or “Why didn’t you call?”
M: That was quick. Going back to marriage, a 10-year-old kid named Alan has an interesting take you might want to consider, DJ: “You got to find somebody who likes the same stuff. Like, if you like sports, she should like it that you like sports, and she should keep the chips and dip coming.”
DJ: I’m an advocate of intellectual compatibility. It doesn’t mean a couple has to think alike. Being able to carry a healthy conversation is enough. That said, many people may feel that the world belongs to the young. If only we could be a child again. But I say it belongs to those who live it consciously. Our circumstance or age can influence our decision but perspective matters too. Yup. It all seems too simple. But really, who said the formula for happiness had to be complicated?