Artist & Writer, San Francisco Bay Area

Favorite Enn Things


Enn is himself an explorer, and also, I get to explore his little mind as we go about our business day to day. Our conversations and his learning style have grown from asking specific questions that don’t have answers, to his own pursuit of subjects that he loves. The current one: Maps. He knows the states already (what!?! he’s 5!!!) and he can even recall shapes of states. “Mama that paint shape looks like Ohio.” And I think to myself… really? “It just needs a little dip in the middle at the top and it’d look just like Ohio.” Low & behold, he’s right. His questions used to get me tied up in knots. He’d ask things that I couldn’t explain to him. “Is three-hundred-million-billion-and-fifty-thousand-hundred-and-nine the biggest number ever?” Okay… where do I start with that? I’d be lying if I didn’t say it drove me crazy. But the alternative is to have a child who is not curious, and how do you teach curiosity? Anyway, I’d try to give a good shot at answering each question. “Honey, first off that’s not a real number. Secondly, there is no biggest number ever because you can always Plus One and it’s bigger again….” and he’d get this blank look staring at me. I think all he wanted me to do was get caught up in the moment of wonder with him. Oops. But it was hard to decipher that when the boy was so insistent to get The Answer to his Important Question. What was I to do? It takes skill to navigate his curious observations, and to participate in the discoveries he is making. Mostly, it takes patience, and I am not good at that. I wish I was. But patience is learned, right? So I will learn right along side him.

As long as he doesn’t ask me to count to fifteen-million-hundred-and-two-thousand-fifty-three.


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