Magic Trio

Dear J-

As Schoolhouse Rock teaches us, three is a magic number; for every fairytale with three siblings, we’ve been unconsciously trained to believe that it’s the third brother that will be responsible for overcoming the obstacles and monsters; we know that it’s the third sister who’s modest yet beautiful. Three knocks on the door, three times round the bush, three years spent in labor. At three years old figgy continues to amaze and frighten; this afternoon she decided that the perfect fashion accessory was the new helmet we got this morning, so she spent the night charming the various clerks and waitstaff we encountered.

I recently picked up The Fool of he World and His Flying Ship, which is a Caldecott winner, but unlike most of the others we have on the shelf, it’s a pretty substantial story as well, where the third ne’er-do-well son succeeds without his parents’ blessings because, in part, he takes direction well and is a pleasant traveling companion, not ascribing motives but assuming best intentions instead. The example motivates me to take things less seriously at night; there is no serious plot to keep my stenorious tones from rolling out over her room. We’ll get there eventually, and the time isn’t wasted, after all.

So three is a magic number; three is a beautiful time to be around and it gives me three thousand opportunities to be a better person every day. Three hundred smiles, thirty moments of tearing my hair out in blind frustration, thirty more chances to defuse my temper with some disarming offhand comment. Three wishes before the genie goes into the bottle for the night: that tomorrow is better than today, that today the lessons stick around tomorrow, and that three (more) amazing moments go on record again.



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