I am a chronicler. From the day my daughter Erin uttered her first word, I wrote down her every amusing comment. Since she was our little bear cub, I called her collection of witticisms Cub Quotes. By the time Erin reached adulthood, I had accumulated more than 100 typed pages of these tender, amusing and laugh-out-loud remembrances that spanned her entire kidhood.
Five years old
Erin was lying with her head on my chest looking at me. I was lying on her bedroom floor. I smelled something and asked her if she passed gas. Without changing her expression, she said, “It’s your breath.”
Paging through Cub Quotes now, I am astonished that I have no recollection of some of the incidents I captured so long ago. I know that, at the time, I thought I’d remember every clever comment forever. Not so much. Time blurs the sharp edges of memory to the point where, if I do remember the incident, my printed account of it often differs from my memory of it. And if I do remember it clearly, I may be hard-pressed to guess how old Erin was when she said it.
Eight years old
Erin wanted me to rub her back at bedtime. I told her it was too late. As I was leaving, she called after me, “Rub your cub!”
For the sake of accuracy and posterity, I am so glad I wrote down these Cub Quotes on the day they occurred. Erin, of course, loved hearing them as she was growing up. Just like my sister and I used to say to our mom when we were kids, Erin would occasionally beseech her mom and me to “tell me about when I was little.” Instead of trying to remember long-ago events, I’d simply pull out the Cub Quotes three-ring binder and regale her with hilarious stories from her younger days.
Nine years old
After Erin visited the orthodontist, I told her that I had had braces, too. “You had braces?” she asked incredulously. “Yes,” I said. She reached over, pulled up my upper lip and gave my teeth a quick once-over. “Didn’t help,” she said.
Parents, I urge you to write down your peanut’s (or your grandpeanut’s) funny comments. You’ll be grateful you did, and so will generations yet to come. To this day, I still love opening my Cub Quotes collection and reminiscing about the wonderful days of Erin’s kidhood.
Eleven years old
Erin and I were at my parents’ for the weekend. We were downstairs. Erin asked me, “What do you do when you’re a grown-up? Is it boring? Because when you’re a kid you can frolic.”
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ABOUT PHIL BOLSTA
Through God’s Eyes: Finding Peace and Purpose in a Troubled World, is a road map for living a more peaceful, beautiful life. It’s the one book that explains how dozens of spiritual principles interact, how to weave them together into a cohesive worldview, and how to practically apply this spiritual wisdom to daily life.
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