Monday, March 9, 2009
There Once Was a Girl
I am so thankful for you. You light up the room with your sweet dimpled smile and big blue eyes. Your laughter is infectious. You are naturally funny and so, so silly. You say "Ahhh, she's cute" as you peer over baby Amelia and you give frequent, uninvited hugs and kisses. You make us laugh everyday and sometimes, when I look at you, my heart feels too big to fit inside my chest. You are a sweet, special gift from God.
But you are also a turd.
Someday, I'm sure I'll look back on this time in your life and chuckle at your antics. I'll smile fondly as I recall the time you bit the sweetest boy in your class at school. And the time you bit his eight year old sister at a church gathering. I'll giggle as I retell the story of you shouting "GO AWAY" to an elderly man at Red Lobster and the time you said "I hate that girl" to the unassuming checker at Old Navy. I'll laugh nostalgically as I remember the way you used to steal things from Claire and then run away, laughing hysterically as she collapsed on the floor in a sobbing heap. All the times you had to sit in time out at dance and school, all the times you humiliated me by saying hateful things to strangers, all the times you made Claire cry, all the times your defiant behavior sent me to the brink of insanity, all these times will make me laugh and long for the old days.
But now is not that time. Now is the time to order parenting books off the internet and ask random strangers for advice. Now is the time to pray that you make it through a school day without biting, hitting or scratching another child. Now is the time to make sticker charts and reward good behavior while punishing bad behavior. And now is the time to realize that this, too, will pass.
And when it does, at least I'll have some good stories to tell at your wedding...