My imaginative first grader was home sick from school yesterday, so she happened to meet a special someone for the first time: Irena, who cleans for us every 4 weeks. My daughter was taken with her. Irena has wispy gray-blonde hair that she wears in a high bun; rosy cheeks and a generously-shared bright smile; enthusiastic nods and giggles with which she communicates her warmth to my children, since she speaks no English; and she’s so dignified that she makes scrubbing floors look special. “Mom, she’s the Fairy Godmother, for real.” And my two daughters started a several-hours-long game of fairies in response to Irena’s presence with us. I don’t think Irena knew she was the protagonist.
As it turns out, Irena looks a lot like a fairy godmother to me too. Bippity boppity boo. A little fairy dust (or a whole lot of elbow grease) and my house sparkles. What a blessing.