Mister Rogers, Our Nation’s Most Trusted Adult
He didn’t have to do it,
But he did.
He showed up for kids.
Generations of kids.
Not to be their friend,
Though he always was.
But to listen and learn,
Wanting to know how to be their voice.
How to speak for them,
And what to say.
He listened to their fears,
Of not having someone to turn to,
And be seen by.
With a flip of a switch,
He found them,
Able, to trust the man in the box.
He was there,
And he wasn’t.
It felt safe knowing he’d show up again,
Not because he had to,
But because he wanted to.
I didn’t show up, a lot.
Especially when kids started saying he was,
For wanting to show up.
I tried to reason he liked kids,
But told, “He really likes kids.”
And he did,
But not like that.
I never felt weird, creepy, or silly,
For wanting to visit my friend.
I felt those ways when I didn’t.
When I put the ones outside the screen,
Before the one in it.
I missed him on those days.
I still do.
Yet with the tap of my fingertip,
He is back in my living room,
In my sight,
On my screen.
He beams at me,
Reminding me of conversations we shared,
Talks I took through life.
Episodes that epitomized what a Trusted Adult is,
Was, and always will be.
Someone who showed up,
Let me speak up,
Questioned why I froze up,
Empathized when I “messed up”,
Asked me why I felt down,
Remained silent when I shut down,
Comforted me when I broke down,
Supported me when I took down,
And encouraged me to listen,
And learn from myself.
To trust how I felt about a person,
Place or problem.
To trust my own advice.
To follow my own lead.
And to know when I got lost, scared or hurt,
My Trusted Adult is only, ever screen time away.
Reflecting back who I am too,
Happy Father’s Day, Mister Rogers!
Love, Marcella Maggio, A.K.A. Marcy