Friday, January 31, 2014

Fragile

Raising two little girls isn't easy.  More importantly, it isn't for wusses.  Benny and I... we're a lot of things.  Wusses?  Not one of them.

So, it's important to us that we not raise wusses.  Mostly because of the whining.  Because whining?  It's for wusses. And there's one thing that I have waaayyy too much of in my life, and that's whining.

We are raising tough, strong and brave girls.  Ask my girls what Nadolski's are, and they'll tell you that they're tough.... stwong... and bwave.  Also, turns out that they're bit strong-willed.  Or stubborn mules as Benny has said.  But since that's definitely something they get from him, he can just deal with it.  I had nothing to do with that bit of nonsense.

Nope.

Which is why the conversation I had with one of The Bean's teachers today was particularly distressing.  Apparently, my little Bean has been going around telling everyone... teachers, other kids, the school pet rock... that she's fragile.

FRAGILE.

My daughter?  FRAGILE?  Have you met this kid?  There is no way in the world that she could be considered anything remotely close to fragile.

This is the child that regularly runs into the doorknob... any all doorknobs... with.her.head., and shakes it off like it's nothing.  This is the 2 year-old child that jumped off a box at gymnastics that was twice as tall as she is, and stuck the landing.  This is the child that runs into the fridge full bore while she's looking at something behind her and bounces off of it like it's made of rubber. This is the child that, well.. she did this a few months ago:



Secondly, where in the world has she even heard the word fragile?  I boxed up all of our good wine glasses after we had her because she was a bull in a china cabinet even when she was unable to walk.  There's nothing fragile in our home, with the exception of Daddy's whiskey collection. 

This child?  Anything but fragile.

I often wonder about what we teach our girls about what they can be and who they are in this world... and then what the world teaches them about what girls are supposed to be, what they can or cannot do and what they should or should not like. And you know what?  Not impressed with the world sometimes. 

We put pink on a toy and make little girls think that a toy in any other color is for boys.  And that that's somehow bad. There are whole aisles in stores dedicated to brainwashing our children as to what they should be playing with based on their gender.  Insanity.  I tell both girls almost daily that there is no such thing as a boy toy or a girl toy.  It's just a toy.  The damn color doesn't make one bit of difference in it's ability to be... a toy. 

Who cares if it's pink?  What if my daughter likes blue? Or orange?  Or God forbid, brown??  Because Daddy wears brown all the time and saves the fishies and how awesome is that?  What if she wants to play with the yellow, blue and red Legos instead of the pink and purple Legos? What if she wants to play with a Transformer or pretend to be an astronaut?

Super cool, right?

But instead of doing that, she begins to question what she likes or dislikes because all of her friends are wearing pink or purple and playing with Barbies.  Where's their originality, their individualism... their truth?  How will they ever stand out from the herd, if they look exactly like everyone else in the herd?

At gymnastics, I caught one of the little boys telling The Bean that she couldn't swing on the rope because she was a girl.  And "girls can't do that." 

Son of a .... you want to give me a nervous tick?  Go ahead and tell me that I can't do something or shouldn't do something because I'm a girl. And then watch me do it.  Watch me stick the landing. And then watch me flip you the bird a la Ross in Friends.

Wanna see my head explode?  Tell my girls they can't do something because they are female.  I don't care if the offender in question is male or female... black or white... is 4 or 40.  Not. Cool. And I will cut you.

But, since I'm supposedly the grown-up in this scenario and flipping off a 4-year-old is frowned upon, I had to grit my teeth and say happily, yet firmly so as not to leave any doubt that Nadolski's are not to be trifled with when it comes to equality and OMG I will not be having my girls treated as anything but equals on the playground or in life: "That's nonsense... you can do anything a boy can do.  And you might even do it better.  Go tell him you want a turn."

And to my immense pride, she did just that.  And this little 4-year-old boy, possibly sensing something was amiss, shrugged his shoulders and gave her a turn on the swing.

Which is good because my next instructions to The Bean would have been to head butt him.

Because standing up for yourself?  That's the new fragile.

3 comments:

Pamela said...

I'm pretty sure that makes 2 kids who are parroting the crap they hear. He with the 'only boys can do that' and her with the 'incorrect! I'd like a turn, please' And in the end, they both did what they wanted to do which is play together. Awesome.

Gal Pal Kaylene said...

Great blog post.

Carrie - Worth Pinning said...

Feelings can be fragile, not girls.