“Though just from her voice then I could tell this didn’t matter to her. Shame didn’t mean any more to her than some other way you could feel on a day–like feeling tired or cold or crying. It went away, finally. And I thought that I would like to feel that way about shame if I could.” (“Children,” p. 86)
This passage struck me and was my favorite from the story. I think it has a lot to do with the title, “Children,” in which we see the different ways in which each character is a child, in which way each character is an adult. This statement about Lucy got me curious and I started thinking. I got the idea that George thought of Lucy as an adult despite her age, and that he was attributing her quality to not care to being more mature. But is it? Shame is something we often feel as children, and I know I still experience it frequently as a 2o-year-old. But how do adults experience shame? I couldn’t tell you because I’m not one, but I wonder if they handle it differently than children. Does she feel shame but try and give off the impression that she doesn’t and George just can’t read it, or is she really the kind of person who doesn’t get bothered by things in the world anymore because she has seen and done so much worse that she is desensitized to it so it didn’t stick around like it does for the rest of us? Because that’s the worst part about shame, and what just makes it shame instead of humiliation and regret all balled up into one, it sticks around a good long while. This made me think about the relationships between all of them although I’m not sure I have them quite figured out yet, I get the feeling that while George may act the least like a child, to me anyway, he is missing something his friends understand.