Tuesday, September 17, 2013

The Girl and the Chair

Dear Natalie,

This morning you balled up your fists tightly next to your skinny waist and yelled "NO" at me through a scrunched red face. As soon as your voice left your mouth, you got quiet and your eyes grew round. Stunned by the power of your own voice, the strength of your desires and the effect your words have on other people. 

I stood very still as I contemplated my next move. Discipline....yes. That needed to occur. But I had to steady my reeling emotions before I grasped you too hard or spoke too harshly. 

But within the anger and frustration that swelled in my throat, also resided a sense of accomplishment and pride. Because, you see, you were annoyed that I had foiled your plans by asking you to drag your chair back to the table in your playroom, when you were about to enact your clever scheme. 

I had placed the iPad just out of your reach on the bedroom bookshelf, in what surely must have appeared as an exciting challenge to you, instead of an impossible obstacle.  But you didn't just throw yourself on the ground in another toddler tantrum. No. You, my dear, saw the bigger picture and hatched a plan. You gathered your materials quietly and set your eyes on the prize. For this fact, I am deeply proud. 

I see a little girl emerging that has confidence in herself combined with cunning intelligence and little to no fear. This combination is wildly unpredictable, completely impossible to stop and sometimes even dangerous. 

I am more than okay with this. 

Because someday, honey, there will be a time when someone tells you, "you can't do that."  They will challenge your intelligence, doubt your capabilities and mistrust your intuition.  They will discourage you from grabbing that chair, they will insist that you will get hurt, or that they have a far superior plan.  

This is when I am begging you to ball up your fists and shout, "No!"  Give them that same determined glare you gave me this morning. The one that is frighteningly fierce and warns of impending doom if anyone were to get in your way. 

Then climb on the damn chair and leave them standing in your shadow. 

With love from your fellow chair climber, 

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