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Go Ask Mom

Amanda Lamb: Mommy magic

Posted September 5, 2010

It's the stories we tell our kids when they are young that come back to haunt us, like the time I told my oldest daughter I had eyes in the back of my head.

In first grade, she gathered a group of her friends in the elementary school cafeteria and told them I was going to read the clock with the eyes in the back of my head. Like a group of tipsy adults watching a party trick, they all huddled around me waiting for me to perform.

I closed my eyes as though I am concentrating very hard on trying to read the clock with the eyes in the back of my head. I un-crack them just enough to get a glimpse of my BlackBerry sitting on the bench beside my left thigh. I just pray the BlackBerry is in sync with the cafeteria clock.

"OK, here I go. It's 12:45. Is that right? Am I close?" I say humbly looking up at the kids assembled around me. My daughter is holding a spicy chicken bite in limbo in her right hand like she is frozen by my miracle performance.

"I told you she had them," she says turning her face to her friends with her best touché grin.

Apparently, one time I must have also told my youngest daughter a story about my magic powers, that mothers have magic kisses, and this, in turn, in her little mind, morphed into me having all sorts magic powers.

"Turn me into a horse," she says one day with a dead-serious look on her face.

"Sweetie, I know I told you I have magic powers, but that's mostly for healing your boo-boos. I'm not sure I can do the horse thing," I say hesitantly.

"Sure you can, Mommy. Just try," and, with that, she closes her eyes tightly and waits. After a few seconds she opens them and looks down at her body with obvious disappointment. "I'm still a girl," she says sadly.

"Sweetie, I'm sorry. I'm just not magic enough," I say trying to think of something to counteract her disappointment.

"OK, Mommy," she says cutting me off. "It's alright. That's a hard one. Let's try something else. How about you read my mind?"

Amanda Lamb is the mom of two girls, a reporter for WRAL-TV and the author of several books including one on motherhood called "Smotherhood." Find her here on Mondays.


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  • genralwayne Sep 6, 2010

    One more...only because I know you'll appreciate this. I was performing for a neighborhood Easter egg hunt. A child asked me to make them all disappear. All of the other children joined in. I explained that the best I could do was to make them invisible. They agreed and I explained that invisible children can see one another but none of the adults would be able to see them. I waved my wand and, with the help and wonderful collusion of the parents, the children turned invisible. The parents were wonderful! After about ten minutes of this game, I panicked through several "spells" trying to restore them before finally figuring it out; it would take a parent's love and hug to restore the children to their visible glory. That was the best moment of the entire day.

    Afterward, one little girl walked up to me, struck a serious stance and ordered, "Don't you EVER do that again!" and stalked off. I love and so envy the child's power of imagination.

    I do so love being a magician! :)

  • genralwayne Sep 6, 2010

    A fun story. Thank you, Ms. Lamb. Also a reminder that children should be permitted to look at their parents (and grandparents) with a touch of awe and wonder.

    Growing up in Northern Ohio, the closing remarks of a favorite TV kidshow host reminded me every day, "You can fool some of the people all of the time and all of the people some of the time - but you can't fool Mom." As a professional family magician today I keep those words close to heart. I grab every chance given to prove the magical powers inherent in mothers and fathers and reinforce that wonder and awe. Thank you for keeping the magic of love and the love of magic alive.