Unexpected pep talk

happy kid

I love my bed time chats with my girls.  It’s our chance to catch up, get questions answered and talk about life.  Usually I try to give them my full attention and offer some clarity, comfort, encouragement, support, love and the kind of knowledge that their young years cannot  grant them.  My hope is  that on some level they’ll remember and treasure this time as much as I do.  But tonight I walked out feeling like maybe, I got it all wrong.  I really have to listen more.

Eden: I wish I would have a little sister when I’m a teenager.

Me:  Huh. Ok, Why’s that?

Eden: So when I have a crush she can come and say “Oooh, is that your boyfriend?” and tease me in a cute way.

Me: Really? You’d like that?

Eden: Yup. How old do I have to be to go to high school?

Me: Fourteen.

Eden: So it goes  1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14. That’s it? I’m already at 5, that was pretty quick!

Me: Tell me about it. Before you know it, you’ll be off to high school.

Eden: Wanna hear more?

Me: Sure.

Eden: 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21…. (And then goes on steadily counting to one hundred. To be clear, I just liked hearing her thoughts on life. If I had known otherwise I may have asked her to show me how good she was at counting by tens).

Eden: What?? I just counted to 100!  Oh My Gosh!  Are you so proud of me?

Me: Absolutely! That was awesome!

Eden: Wow! It’s like, I’m amazing!!!

Me: You are. And don’t you forget it.

Eden: I thought counting to 100 would take so many days, like a long, long time. See mama? When you think you can’t do something, you actually can.

3 wise little ones share some thoughts on “How to have a good life”

new year

Noa and Eden, while jumping up and down “Please please pleeeease can we have a play date?”

“Sure.”

Our neighbour, Kate arrives shortly after. “Just find something you girls can play while I work – and no TV.”

In chorus, “What are you working on?”

“Some writing for my blog.”

“What’s a blog?”

Oh boy, I somehow knew I had just opened a can of cyber worms.

“Where do the words go? What’s the internet?  How big is it?  Does it ever run out?  Who reads it?  The whole world?  Really?”  Something I must have said clearly won me a captivated audience.

“What’s it about mommy?” asked Eden in her most endearing voice.

“Hmm, the New Year …and how we can make the most of it… you know, doing our best to listen to our hearts …planning for what we want… stuff like that.”

Noa lit up with enthusiasm, “So if I said something people would listen?”

“I don’t know honey, but if it’s something good you’re saying, it doesn’t hurt to try.”

“I am nearly nine and I know what I would say to help others do good this year” assured Kate.

Here I was struggling to find the right word while these little ones eagerly awaited to spill theirs. So, I ripped three pink papers from the magnetic pad on our fridge and handed them out.  I was curious about what they’d say and figured this could be fun.  Armed with pretty stationery and glittery pens the girls got to work.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

noa, kate & eden

I asked the a few questions to get them going…

1.       If you had a magic wand and could learn one new skill this year what would it be?

Noa – I would learn to be magic and talk to animals.

Kate – I’d want to learn how to go to ‘Book Land’.

Eden – I wanna learn how to garden flowers, and swim really, really well.

2.       What do you think you’re good at?

Noa – Soccer and reading books.

Kate – Pretty much everything.

Eden – Colouring.

3.      What advice would you give others so they could have the best year ever?

Noa – I think people should not litter and they should help the environment.  Listen to other people’s ideas and think. Don’t beat up other people.  Spread love, be kind and care about others.  Never force someone to do something you don’t like.  Give others gifts and help everyone feel special.  Believe in your lovely dreams.  And stop smoking, or if you know someone who does, tell them to stop kindly.

Kate – In general, people should remember to have a good life.  I would say, don’t shoplift, don’t bully, don’t blame others when you did something wrong, admit something if it was you.  Plant gardens to make the planet more beautiful.  Help people who are hurt very badly, and be thankful even if you don’t like the gift you got.

Eden – Go to the park a lot.  Say please and thank you.  Be nice to animals, don’t bully and don’t steal presents or other peoples’ kids!  And if your headband broke and somebody gave you another one, like just the same headband, remember how nice that person is.   And if you listen to bad dreams, be careful, maybe they will come.  Also, don’t make people eat worms because they’re yucky and that’s really not nice.  And never give up.  That’s it.

I was right, this was fun and so much better than what I would have said.  They may be young but they are packed with wisdom, sweetness and a unique perception that is a treasure to witness. Thank you girls, I’ll keep your generous advice close to my heart as I ring in the New Year.

Happy New Year

The darndest things -chicken pox

Chick04
one smart little chick

(Noa, when speaking about the importance of getting vaccines even though the needles hurt)

“What’s chicken pox mommy? ”

“Well, it’s a virus that makes you sick.  Red itchy dots appear all over your body and kids are more likely to get it than adults which is why you should get the vaccine.”

“Like, all over… ALL OVER?”  she raised a concerned eyebrow, “Even on your privates?”

“Yup, and your face and your hands.  I wish they had vaccines for it when I was little.  It can get quite uncomfortable and if your scratch the sores, you get scars like the one I have on my forehead.”

She looked closely, “Oh, that’s what that hole is.”

“It is not a hole, thank you very much.  It’s a constant reminder of many days at home bored and covered in calamine lotion -that’s a lotion for the itchiness.  One day I was playing cards and lost at Go Fish.  It was a dumb mistake.  I slapped my forehead and felt a pop.”

She caressed my forehead gently and tilted her head in empathy “How old were you when you got the chicken dots?” she asked.

“I was twelve,” suddenly I was flooded with the same adolescent drama of this unfairness, ” I got teased so badly.  Some kids called it a Paki-Dot, which is very rude and inaccurate so never say that. I hated it.”

“So for only twelve years you didn’t have it?”

“That’ s right’ ”

“Think of all the years it’s been with you.  It went everywhere with you.”

“You’re right honey, it’s not really a big deal.  I don’t really mind any more,”

I paused, wondering at the depth this was taking.

“But you gotta love it too mommy.  It’s so cute.  You had it for so long, it’s kinda like a friend.”

“I guess it is.  It gives me a story to tell and it’s what makes my face look like me now.”

“That’s how I’ll always know it’s you.”  she assured while lightly hovering over the scar with her index finger.

“Ok mommy, you can let the doctor pinch me with the needle”.♥