So I’m growing an elf. It was a Christmas gift from last year, and I put it in a “safe place” along with a couple other gifts (a fire-spitting wind-up nun and a chocolate covered rice krispie treat, which I sadly will admit I ate when I found the elf), meaning I didn’t find it for a year. But what better time to grow an elf than on CHRISTMAS DAY???
I was very excited about growing an elf, seeing as I’d never done it before. And the concept seemed pretty simple: you put the elf in water and it grows. The package directions said it could take up to 10 days, and that its final size depended on how much space I gave it to grow. Sort of like the Chinese wrapping up their feet to keep them small, but the opposite.
Did I mention the elf could grow SIX HUNDRED TIMES ITS ORIGINAL SIZE!!! That’s, like, the size of a toddler. So I went and filled up the largest plastic bucket I could find (I would have filled up a pickle barrel if we had one) and, after taking an exhaustive amount of “before” photos, I dropped the little dude into a bucket of water.
Well, it’s been five days…the half-way point…and he is roughly twice his original size. What’s worse (maybe?) is that he had this growth spurt within the first couple hours I dropped him in. He contorted and bulged and looked sort of like the elephant man, which the directions deemed as okay, and then he got this old man happy face and settled into his current size. I waited for him to buldge and distort and grow again, thinking that I might have to fill up the bathtub and transfer him in order for him to reach his full potential, when I realized the bucket it still far too big a space for him. I wondered if the problem was that he shouldn’t lie flat while growing, so I attempted to prop him up longitudinally, but that didn’t work either.
There’s still five days left, so I’m crossing my fingers that he’ll have a Jack’s Beanstalk moment, but I have to say my hope is dwindling. Now, because I am me and prone to thinking everything is some sort of cosmic sign, I’m led to wonder: is this supposed to symbolize my life in some way? Here I go, off to New Mexico, planning to center myself and “grow” as a self-assured human being, but watch out! After a sudden growth spurt (and maybe a haircut), I will plateau at a measly 2x my original size…when I could be SIX HUNDRED TIMES MY ORIGINAL SIZE!!!
Maybe I’m freaking out because my home-high wore off a bit and I caught myself retreating into the what-could-have-been’s or what-never-will-be’s…the pasttime of the “old” me. The tiny me. The me that still has a lot of growing to do. But maybe it’s still too soon to tell.
I was on the phone yesterday with a friend from Dartmouth and she said, “Can you please tone down your positivity for a minute? You’re just too optimistic for me right now.” The fact that possibly no one has ever said such a thing to me before may mean something’s changed, even if I can’t see it myself. I’ll keep my fingers crossed.