The Joys of Parenting

Since the day our oldest child was born, I have been waiting until he was old enough to read him The Hobbit. Was five years old enough to understand it? Would he get it at six? I was always tempted to start it, but managed to hold off until he was seven and a half. It was finally time to set him down and read.

My oldest child is jaded. He’s been skeptical and cynical all his life. Nevertheless, he was soon enthralled. His eyes went wide at Mirkwood and he was literally sitting on the edge of the bed when Smaug finally appeared. Nearly every night for a month he stayed up a little later than his brother and listened to the adventures of Bilbo Baggins. That month was a sublime experience for me, one of the pure unadulterated joyous parenting experiences.

bilbo and gandalf

Last week, “Whole Lotta Love” came on the radio while we were running some errands. Naturally, I turned it up. After thirty seconds, he yelled at the top of his lungs, “This is the best song I’ve ever heard in my whole life!” Introducing him to Tolkien was sublime. But blowing his mind with some seriously hard Zeppelin for the first time… that was special too!