It had been a long day. It was all part of that messy middle part of raising kids that fills the days of the middle-aged. Our family had been working, running errands, doing chores, slogging through homework and running back and forth to swim practice. Then, there was dinner, the prep, the cooking, and the cleaning of it. Now, my husband and I wanted a respite before we undertook the final push to bedtime—a wearying process of crabbing and cajoling that never fails to frustrate and flummox. We had assembled American-family-style in front of the TV for a few minutes of mind-numbing DVR downtime.
The show had lapsed into a commercial break. None of us could remember who had the remote. So, we just let the carefully manipulative pitches roll over us as we convalesced in our Lazy Boy comfort.
I barely noticed what we were watching. My eyes glazed over as I plotted my most direct route to bed covers. Then, my subconscious registered the familiar chords of Marvin Gaye’s “Let’s Get it On.”
The ad was for Easter candy. The screen showed a peanut butter jar and a chocolate bunny inching closer to it. The music portends of a coming together between the two objects that is NSFW.
My oldest children’s innocence is a ship long-since sailed, carried away on the waves of an incomplete report given by one of my friend’s children, with the gaps reluctantly filled by me. Comforted by the thought that this particular commercial’s lusty undertones would sail over the head of my youngest, I smiled at my youngest boy savoring his innocence and youth.
He was watching the screen with delight, a grin stretched from ear to ear. I smiled, enjoying the fact that he was unaware of what was implied by the activity on the screen. How wonderful it was to have a pure, innocent lamb, who had no idea how smarmy the world was, who knew the Easter bunny was real, and believed that babies were delivered by a stork. I was brimming with pride at protecting his innocence so well thus far, wondering how long I would have these moments with him before he discovered the truth.
As if he could read my mind, he turned to me, his eyes twinkling with joy. My heart swelled with motherly pride…until I heard him say with a hearty chuckle, “Bunny sex with a peanut butter jar! That’s funny!”