The other day I had the chance to be in the audience for the Mike and Mike in the Morning show at Disney’s Boardwalk. In the course of the show, Mike Greenberg mentioned how he got to experience Disney’s Magic Kingdom for the first time through the eyes of his kids. Specifically, his four year-old Stevie. This made me think about the numerous times I had been to Disney and how it all changed the first time I went with my kids. It truly is a different experience.
Seeing things again for the first time is one of the many benefits and joys of being a parent. It’s a subtle reminder of the everyday items we tend to take for granted. As an IT professional, my days are filled with e-mails, instant messages, text messages and the occasional page (yes, I still carry a pager). So it was almost second nature when I took my Nintendo DS and showed my daughter that with it I can connect to her Nintendo DS and we could IM each other. She thought it was neat, but my son Daniel thought it was the next best thing to oxygen!
So I sit here pecking away at the keys on my laptop watching my two kids revel in the magic and mystery that is Nintendo’s PictoChat program. At first I had to explain to Daniel that typing a message on his DS, sending it, then running over to his sister to tell her what his message is defeats the purpose of the whole thing. Nevertheless, it is still cool to feel a newfound appreciation for a technology that to me seems so commonplace.
Of course the vicarious euphoria is not limited to gizmos and gadgets. Every time we go somewhere where there is a person in costume, Daniel’s smile stretches from ear to ear. I don’t know what his affinity is to mascots and other costumed characters, but it’s clear to see he truly enjoys it and as a result so do I.
It’s been a while since I have gone to Disney World with my kids. After seeing them just work away with their DS’s and go back and forth and back and forth, I am thinking a trip to visit Mickey won’t be too far away. Besides, I haven’t been to Disney with Lee, and the only thing that compares to seeing things through the eyes of your child is sharing a wonderful experience with the person you love!