A most difficult task has been brought before me, “take an object and use it to create a story that defines the relationship between child and parent.” The reason I say this is especially difficult is I have only been a child and not a parent, and therefore could only truthfully tell the story from one perspective and not the other with as much validity. Since I must choose an object, and tell a story, I look into an empty cardboard box.
This box makes me think of a newborn child who knows nothing about the world around it and is therefore empty, waiting to be filled. I decide to grab this empty box and fill it with the things I find laying around in my room, which makes me think of how a parent must endlessly fill their child with the knowledge of the world. I soon realize my box is almost full already, but as the child grows, their capacity to learn increases more and more, and to the parent, it must seem like they will never be completely filled. I consider how I must be careful about what I put into the box, for if I put something heavy inside, and the box cannot hold it, it will break. This may be like a parent who has to be careful about what they teach their child, for if they were to show it things that are too negative or adult, it could be detrimental to its growth and development.
One may wonder just how the relationship between a child and a parent could be compared to something as simple as a cardboard box. Personally, I found it rather difficult to make such a comparison, and some may feel I did not really provide an explanation. I believe a child is like a box, with its parents, friends, and other significant people or events filling it, until it is no longer an empty cardboard box, but one filled with the knowledge of the world needed to be a human being.
As Forrest Gump once said, “Life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re gonna get.” I believe this reflects a parent’s view of their child, the child being a complete mystery to them until their “box” is opened and the parent looks inside.
Jacobus Wright Aucbuchon originally wrote this essay for Palabras's official Website back in October 2012.