You pull back the curtain as hard as you can and find me waiting there. The fabric, heavy from its length, sways on your command, sending a breeze that hits each of us. Our eyes meet and you let out a laugh that cracks against the moving air. You waddle backwards to get out of the way of the curtain and push it back again so that it hides me except for my toes, poking out from below. You know I'm here, but you grab the curtain again and pull it to reveal me - your dad - waiting for you. You see me again and howl with laughter at your discovery.
Please never forget the wonder of discovering something. Search and search until you find what it is you're looking for and then rest content that your journey is over. Cherish what it is you find, knowing that it is uniquely suited for who you are becoming.
Instead of cloaking me again in drapes, you come behind the curtain with me. The two of us stand; you, barely able to control your laughter, see each second hiding from Mama as an eternity. Our eyes meet again and we both have wide grins across our faces. You can't take it any more so you fling open the curtain and your eyes meet Mama's. Your surprise begets giggles from both you and her and then you're off once more behind the curtain with me to do it all over again.
You're nearly big enough to see out of the window. When you hide behind the curtain this time, you turn around and peer over the ledge to see the tops of trees and clouds. Lost in observation, you let the entire curtain close in around you. The cloth rests against your head, then your back, and around your legs. The calm of being covered up keeps you quiet as you stare outdoors until you decide there is nothing more to see and you spin around again to stare at the inside of the window treatment now mere inches from your nose.
How will you ever get out of here? doesn't cross your mind in that instant. Rather, you reach out with two small arms and try to grab as much of the curtain as you can, taking in the fact that you are little and we are playing in the curtains. The experience of the moment has you captivated and the future is where it should be: as a distant dream.
Please remember how to get lost in something bigger than yourself. Know that vulnerability is the first requirement for intimacy, and that being a part of something larger than yourself helps you understand complex topics like the universe, love, and community.
And don't forget you are always surrounded, that you are never alone, and that we can play in the curtains again, even when you are big.