There is the most adorable five-year-old boy that comes to my story times. He is always cheerful and enthusiastic about everything. We're doing play dough for craft time? Wonderful! I love play dough! A book about cats? Wonderful! I think kitties are so cute! He gets totally into all the songs and stories. And I swear to you, I've never seen the kid frown. Not even for a second, not once. He's also really polite, both with adults and other children. He has a little brother who is about 3, and it's the same thing. Just absolutely ecstatic to be alive in the world.
This, to me, is amazing. I mean, everybody has bad days, wrong-side-of-the-bed days, can't-do-anything-right days. I know I only see them once a week, but they've been coming to storytime for over a year now, and even my other storytime favourites have a meltdown now and again. But not these kids. I have basically come to regard their mother with awe. I have been tempted to ask her, "How have you brainwashed these Stepford children into being complete angels, and can you teach me how to do it?" (Yes, I know I don't have kids, but if I ever do, this knowledge will be invaluable.)
And then today, they brought their baby sister along with them. She is about one I would guess. Sitting up, crawling, but not yet walking. And she was exactly the same. Completely happy. Her mom took her out of her stroller, set her down on the floor in the middle of a bunch of strange kids and parents, and then went to help her boys with the craft. And this baby didn't even bat an eyelash. She grabbed a nearby ball and started playing catch with the closest adult. Smiling and laughing.
A one-year-old is too little to be bribed, cajoled or disciplined. Which leads me to believe that the mom has not done anything to make her kids this way. This is their natural state of being. They are genetically prone to be angelic. I think that geneticists everywhere might be interested in isolating and studying this amazing genetic phenomenon.