If your first thought was that the title of this post is a quirky metaphor, well, I will have to say it’s not. At the time of this writing a purple hammerhead shark is wearing a white cape sewn with green thread and there is also a lollipop plate on the mantle.

My youngest son is almost five and has yet to step foot into a learning institution. People assume he’s in preschool. He’s not and that creates some eyebrow arching in some. It doesn’t bother me. He wakes up in the morning with a mind as fresh as a sun-kissed summer berry. And every day turns into a creative adventure of some sort. Today he wanted a hoodie for his shark and then he wanted to make a lollipop plate. The hoodie turned into a cape given the minuscule size of the shark, but that was fine.
As for the plate, he really tried to make himself understood, but seeing he could not, he took matters into his own hands. Dragged a chair to the cupboards, grabbed a white plate with blue trim triumphantly declaring “that’s the one I need”, went and got his finger paints and got to work. Ten minutes later he showed me a beautiful round rainbow-like design on a plate, like one of those colourful lollipops most kids look at in candy stores but never really get to have one.

It’s just noon and there is a whole afternoon ahead of us. There are more ideas to sprout and marvel at. The shark will lose its cape in a few days – misplaced, not thrown out – and that’s just fine. Swimming with a cape on makes for lousy hunting anyway. As for the lollipop plate, it’s on the mantle and it will stay there. A reminder that sometimes even the best intentioned people who love us the most might not understand what we mean but it is up to us to carry on with making it happen if we believe the idea is worth it. And come to think of it painting our way through life is as colourful as we make it out to be.