Little Sister has always been skeptical about Bounce Houses. When she was very young she looked at them quizzically wondering just how in the world they could stay inflated. I answered to the best of my ability. I am thinking it was something along the lines of, “Well, there is a fan and it blows air, like a lot of air, um, no, I don’t know EXACTLY how much air, but it’s a lot…and it blows all that air pretty quickly, well, I am not sure HOW quickly, but I think it’s pretty fast and it just puffs up you see, so…” Now that I am recounting the whole thing, seems pretty insufficient for an explanation.
But one brave day at a pumpkin patch she gathered the courage to try it out (after much convincing that I had never seen a bounce house deflate while it was in use) and mid-way through the experience guess what happened? It deflated. Arms and legs and screaming and thrashing ensued while faux castle pillars crashed limply down on top of trapped kids as horrified parents like me quickly dislodged our children out the disaster. On her second attempt, at a birthday party, a kid tripped over the cord that the fan was plugged into and again it caved in on her. I should point out that I went to great lengths to say it was highly improbable that the second time she was ever in one that it would also fail somehow. Although she has since been in a small bounce house, she is very cautious of them (obviously) and no longer looks to be as any sort of ‘expert’ on the units (understandable).
Today we were guests at a birthday party for a fellow kindergartener and they had a bounce house. Little Sister looked at it cautiously and optimistically but from a seated position away from its entrance. Her friends asked her to go in and she delayed them for a bit, first wandering over to a swing set and then buying time as she took a turn on the trampoline. She looked at me with a confident smile and I just knew that I had her trust – that she knew she could rely on me. I was prepared to boldly declare this was her time and as she headed toward me and the bounce house she sweetly leaned in close to me and asked “should I call Daddy to find out if it’s safe for me, he will know”.