Today’s Ten

Yesterday Isabel and I were getting ready to head out the door for her five-year check-up. I was applying my eye shadow and blush and Isa looked at me and asked if she could put on a little lip gloss, “so I can look stylish.”

Oh my goodness the words this girl says.

It’s not so much the words as the concepts. Having a child who, at five, has this idea of what appearances even means — well this is something entirely new for me. In the past, dealing with a five-year-old meant our discussions on going out in public centered exclusively on behavior and the need to not run away from me. To consider how you will look when you leave the home? Never ever in my wildest dreams did I realize that was A Thing before the age of fifteen.

Apparently, it is.

So I let Isabel dab a little gloss and inspect herself in the mirror and she looked lovely. We saw the doctor and it was a very calm and pleasant little experience indeed. It also made me laugh how Isabel’s version of being the center of attention (as one tends to be when one goes to the doctor) was to sit very still and cross her hands properly, just so. In the past few years, bringing Henry to see our pediatrician has meant bracing myself for him to LITERALLY (not literally but just about literally) climb off the walls. He too loves our doctor and his way of getting all the attention is to GO NUTS.

The great thing about our doctor is he handles it all very chilled outĀ either way. I am sure there was a time I apologized for wild behavior from my children (really, it’s just so discouraging) while finding a balance in correcting them constantly and listening to what the doctor is saying. In other words, at some point you have to cut your losses (no amount of my correcting is doing the trick in this moment, I will deal with this later) and tune out wild antics so you can actually talk about what’s going on with your child (which is: this whole {hands swirling} scene, please tell me we aren’t all crazy).

And the good news, as I sat there and enjoyed the moment with Isabel where she made the whole experience so very pleasant indeed, is that I didn’t have any false sense of victory. I mean, of course I was proud of my daughter’s excellent behavior, but I was also very much aware that it had little to do with my superior parenting skills. Whew. Glad there’s that.