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I once babysat a 4 year old named Jack. He took my hand while I took him for a walk. All of a sudden he took a step back. His blue eyes widened as did my heart, I’ve never seen a child look so torn apart.
“Careful, BE CAREFUL!” Jack yelled at me quickly. He looked down at the ground before stepping back briskly.
“What? What’s the matter?” I asked him. I followed his eyes and was kind of surprised; it was grass! He was just looking at grass!
“You have to be careful; this grass is tough. If you step too hard, it’ll swallow you up!” I found that his words were tugging at the corners of my mouth until I let out a tiny little smile.
“Really? How does that happen?” I asked him politely. He plopped on the ground a few feet in front of me.
“Well…” He began. “…there are these tiny fairies, but there aren’t very many!” I smiled as his words got loud and then quiet and then loud once again. I wasn’t bothered by things like that back then. I found it endearing, and wonderfully cute.
“So there are fairies….in the ground?” I guess.
“Oh yes! The fairies are spread out in the grass. They can’t see each other and they’re very lonely.” He frowned as he explained the fairies’ pain. The worry in his eyes made me feel the same.
“So what do the lonely fairies do?”
“Well they grab the people! Once they hear you step on the grass, they pull the grass in and you’ll fall right down. Crash!” He waves his arms to animate his words.
“The fairies grab everybody? That’s horrible.”
“No. They just grab little children.”
“Well would they grab me?”
“But I’m not a little child, Jack.”
And he just gives me a look, a look that could kill. He doesn’t say anything else and I don’t think he will. He picks his small body off the ground and just like that he’s back to running around
Children can see things that we cannot. Like fairies and the fact that I’m younger than I thought.