Fast forward twenty-five years and I am now my mother, though I like to think not nearly as neurotic. My own daughter, now eight years old, has been asking for a puppy. We already have a dog, and I am not inclined to add to the chaos at this point in time. But I have another idea, and I ask my daughter if she would like to have a trampoline. She is ecstatic. So am I. We head out and buy the biggest trampoline we can find. I also buy the safety netting and realize that my mother has taken up a permanent residence inside my head.
Months later the trampoline is still the highlight of our backyard—and it is a family affair. The kids and I spend hours at a time jumping, spinning, and flipping through the air. I am making up for lost time. And while I am confident that my daughter would survive childhood with a trampoline and without a puppy, I know I will give in to the puppy sooner or later. But for now, I am just going to bounce.