Tuesday, April 3, 2012

The beginning. The spiral.

My baby is four years old. She's not a baby, but she's my baby and I don't know how I will survive her.  She's a caring little lady. She's funny. She's smart. She's mine. She's ours.  She's loving. She is the best big sister, I think that was ever made. She lights up whenever she plays with her little buddies. She loves to make new friends and is thrilled every time she meets a new little playmate. She is, as you can imagine, the best.

She is sensitive. She feels things so deeply. She's a people pleaser. She wants everyone to like her. It's scares the shit out of me. Do I want her to be a bull? No. But with some balance, I want her to be herself. I find, that she goes with what other kids do. She's really fixated on friends now a days. It started a few weeks ago. "Mama, is Jez your best friend? Is Liza? Who was your best friend when you were a little girl? What do you mean you have many best friends? What do you mean, Daddy is your best friend? He's your HUSBAND, he isn't your best friend."

Sigh. 

She comes home from the park and will say, "Mama, I met a new best friend!" She doesn't remember her name.  Or we'll go for a bike ride and she'll pass a little girl she once played with at a totally different park and say, "Oh look - she could be my best friend!"

I try to explain, best friends will come in time. It's good to be a good friend to people, and they good friends to you. That not everyone will like you and you may not like everyone - but we're always respectful and kind. I try to explain that through out my life I have had many different groups of friends and some of my very best friends I haven't spoken to in weeks, some even months - but we love each other and we've been there for each other and we'll be there for each other. I might have gone over her head on that one. But we try to be honest, even if it's awkward and it usually is.

It's starting to spiral.  

The kid used to play at least once a week with some kids on our corner over the summer. Our au pair was friends with their nanny.  I remember before our au pair left she said, "Please make sure they still play!" And I said of course; I meant it. I tried to keep the connection. I really did. I waved when we saw them. I texted a few times. Just the other week we texted and she said we'd get the kids together, she'd look at the calendar and I never heard back. And every day my little girl would ask, "Are we going to play with them today?" And everyday I would explain I hadn't heard back yet and we couldn't really just show up. We saw them the other day, with their parents. There was a block party and we stayed for as long as we could but it was awkward. Do the kids not love our little girl the way they should? WHY NOT? I don't understand it. How can her little heart get it? The parents have their friends. The kids have theirs. And our little girl just wants a god damn best friend. Awk.WARD. We left that day and on the way home she realized she didn't really say goodbye. She.lost.her.mind. How do you tell your hurting little, tantrum throwing, girl that they just aren't that into her. 

Heart.Wrenching.

Yesterday, she got home from school. We asked the normal questions, "How was your day? What did you do?" The ball & chain mentioned to me she seemed near tears. She was sad. I tried to talk to her, but she said she didn't want to talk about it. 

A little while later, quietly, she started to tell a story. Timid. Scared to tell me. 

"Will* said he wasn't my friend, anymore. And then I asked Timmy* and he told me that maybe he was still my friend."

And.I.Die.

Not in a cute, isn't that adorable kind of way. 

Today she came home. I asked the normal questions "How was your day? What did you do?" I had to ask. "How were things with Will?"

She started to tell me. Timid. Scared to tell me. 

"I told him I was sorry... cause I asked him a million times. Why won't you be my friend? Cause I don't understand." 

How in the hell do I help her? How can I protect her from this disappointment? At the very least, help her deal with this sadness. I certainly can't handle it, how can her little heart? 



*Names have been changed to protect the stupid bastards from MY best friends. Even if they may or may not be 5 years old.

5 comments:

  1. I'm crying for my little princess, she has a best friend in Spain!!! who is dying for skypedate!! I'm not 4 years old but I love her!!

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    1. I know. I KNOW. It's hard. Skypedate? Coming up!

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  2. awww, poor bub. Not looking forward to that stage!!

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  3. You always get me, with a lump in my throat. Being that we have two very similiar little girls, I can tell you that it does get better. Unfortunately better means thicker skin, not always sure having armor makes your heart hurt less but it is protection. I have been crushed watching some of this unravel for Ella over the years. Yes, I have been tempted to be the bully waiting in the school yard to beat the shit out of one or two little creeps...no joke. That said, I have composed myself. Have certainly had discussions with teachers and even the principal where needed. It is not right that our baby's hearts have to be broken so early on. But, at 7 years old, Ella has become the most amazing, rational, beautiful spirt with a little edge that just helps her speak up when necessary and stand her ground. "go pound sand" or "stick a sock in it" has been heard from afar. Keep on encouraging and loving and reminding that being kind and respectful will always prevail in the end. Love you!

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    Replies
    1. Thank you, pal. Love you. And will keep on, keeping on. Also? "Go pound sand" will be taught to my child, asap.

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