Expired Tags

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As I was drowning in a sea of paperwork in my kitchen, I looked up to see my favorite tiniest friend outside of my kitchen window. My eyes immediately filled up with tears, the overwhelmed kind of tears. Not the super sad ones. The relieved but tired and shy ones. I felt overwhelmed because of the perfect timing of the sweetest bright green feathered hummingbird there to remind me not to fret. Not to feel trapped beneath the rough apathetic waters of bills, insurance, Jury duty notices and expired tags. Yes. And NO!!!!! I learned today that I failed to renew our car tags in September. They don’t renew on their own. Worthless tags. I make a horrible responsible adult. I should dress up as one for Halloween. That would be funny. Not to make excuses, but it was a bit of an unknown as to whether or not we “owned” one of our cars since it had been stolen. For a week. Apparently, you don’t get a “freebie” when it comes to renewing tags if your car was temporarily in someone else’s possession. Who wants to take a trip to the DMV….again? Not. Me.

Some days, I feel like I’ve done a cannonball into some pretty unpredictable territory. Like out in the middle of papers never going away land. You can’t begin to fathom as a child the tsunami of paperwork that you will encounter as an adult. I really want to do a public service announcement for kids. Listen up. Maybe I could have some cheesy irresistible toy in the background to get their attention. No, Snackeez. No.

“Slow down. Don’t grow up so fast. You’ve got it good. Really good. Be the age you are right now. Really soak it up. As it turns out, you may not want to grow up after all.”

Yeah. Yeah. Losing teeth is a pretty awesome feeling. And meeting the height requirement to ride a “big kid” roller coaster feels like a million bucks….but doing taxes and repeatedly getting summoned to jury duty? Shut the front door.

I think that’s part of the reason I love hanging out and working with kids. They don’t even know about “delinquent” notices. I’m not gonna talk to them about all my late bills. That would be so lame. I get to play Barbies or tea party or argue about if Marvel is superior to DC. I can’t make up my mind on that one. It really depends on which male actor is playing the super hero. Kids don’t worry about renewing their car tags on time. They’re caught up in the now. The present. They excitedly and happily live to experience the world happening right in front of their eyes. They jump off walls. Roll down hills. Splash in that gigantic puddle. Poop in the woods. And run a lot of places because they’re stoked. And that’s a pretty awesome trait to possess. Passion for life.

I strategically create stacks of papers in my house. It makes me feel organized. For a moment. I arrange the medical bills, utility bills, and random others. Then, something crazy happens. Those stacks of crap don’t ever talk or grab me when I’m walking by. So I forget about them. Sort of. I guess it’s a pretty inefficient system considering every company has sent us a neon notice at some point or another. I guess I’m a better kid than grown up a lot of times. It’s unfortunate I wanted to grow up so badly…that I did. I lost all my teeth. I can ride any roller coaster I want. I can drink beer legally. And I get to pay bills. Lots of bills.

One of the best things about having kids is that you can use them to help you escape from the deep waters of boredom. They’re like the perfect life boat that pops up out of the blue. Right before a shark attack. In the sweetest voices, they say,

“Hello there. Would you like a ride? Maybe a Popsicle? We’re playing Pirates lost at sea.”

That’s all it takes. And there’s no such thing as expired tags on a pirate ship. So, the arrangement works out wonderfully. I can always be a grown up tomorrow.

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