Monday, February 20, 2012

Jack's take on Isla's magic eyes...

In my quest to ensure that Isla feels at ease wearing her glasses, I decided to have a discussion with Jack about making sure he tells her he loves them, and that he looks after her if someone starts to tease her. I started by telling him that Peanut was a fairy-tale princess so she needs glasses. Here's how that discussion went down:

Me: Isla's a princess so she needs glasses.
Jack: Princesses don't wear glasses.
Me: Yes they do.
Jack: No. They don't. Only Queens wear glasses. And some old Kings, but not princesses.
Me: Well, then, time to write a fucking fairy tale where they do. Mommy wears glasses.
Jack: I guess mostly old people like you have glasses. You have movie glasses, Grandma Mariapolis and Grandma Snow Lake have reading glasses, Daddy has sun glasses. I guess everyone in the whole wide world has sun glasses.
Me: Yup. A lot of people have all kinds of glasses.
Jack: Why does Peanut have to wear them? She looks funny.
Me: Honey, Peanut has to because her eyes are magic. She needs them to help her see better. Her one eye isn't as strong as the other, and these glasses are going to help make it better. Most importantly, she needs you to look after her. Promise me you'll look out for her and help her out if someone's making fun of her? Pinky Square? (when we lock pinky fingers, he calls it a pinky square, instead of a pinky's too cute to correct.)
Jack: OK, Mommy. I promise. Pinky Square. Mommy, are you going to wear glasses until you're old as Grandma?
Me: Yup. And when I'm a Grandma, cuddling your babies, I'll wear my very best glasses so I can see them perfectly.
Jack: When will you be a Grandma?
Me: When you have babies. Then I'll be a Grandma to your babies!
Jack: Wait a'll be a Grandma and a Mom?
Me: Yup.
Jack: Aaaah...that's hard work.

You said it, son. The day after this discussion, Peanut was jumping up and down on a chair. Jack, having taken our discussion quite seriously, turned to her and screeched:

"Peanut! Would you quit banging around? You're going to hurt your loose eye."

And with that admonishment, they both turned back to the task at hand and went about their day. I'm not entirely sure where Jack got this idea from...I suspect the way Peanut's one eye rolls inward got him to thinking that it's actually loose. I'll have to explain to him that there's no danger of it actually falling out. I'll also have to explain that this sort of outburst of caring wasn't exactly what I had in mind when I told him to look out for her. At any rate, I suspect his intentions were good, and that's really all that matters.

As for Peanut? She's doing wonderfully with her new specs. I'll be honest, it was a bit of a tough slog at the beginning. After wearing them for one day, she wheeled up to me on her cart, handed me her glasses and stated:

"Me no want these no more, K?"

As I looked at her, my heart started aching all over again. I started the dangerous slide into a life's not fair mood. I was thinking that no two-year old should have to worry about keeping glasses up on her face. If I don't put the strap on them, they slide down her wee nose, if I put the strap on to hold them up, she gets welts. I'm told the skin will toughen up, but I hate watching her go through it.

So I told myself again:

Life's not fair. But life is good. She'll only think wearing glasses is a big deal if I let it be one. And it's not. I know that. I just want her to be happy. I want her to feel special, not different. I want to hand her the world. I want to protect her from heartache and pain and grief. I don't want her to have to worry about pushing glasses up on her tiny face while she's playing, or have the skin on her nose toughen up so it doesn't hurt. I just want her to be a kid and do kid things and run and laugh and play without worrying about keeping a pair of glasses on her little two-year-old face. I want everything to be perfect for her. But it won't be. That's not the way life works. And that's alright. We don't get to decide what we're handed, but we certainly get to decide how we make it work. That's life. And life is good.

The next day, she showed me how she's making it work. She was stringing beads on her Dora necklace. She can do that now, because she can see. In that moment, I could almost hear her telling me: Wearing glasses is no big deal, Mommy. I got this. That's life. And life is good.


Jenny V said...

Agreed, is so good and Peanut has very clearly got this. Kids are so much more adaptable and resilient than we sometimes give them credit for. She'll do great with her new specs, big brother by her side and mama cheering her on. She is a lucky little gal...and so darn cute, I could just eat her up. Those cheeks kill me. You make beautiful babies. Xo

Laura said...

Love love love it! :o}

Stefanie said...

Look at her concentrating so hard and goin' to town on those beads! So freakin' cute!

Wynter said...

She rocks those specs like no one else! She is so amazing and so are you :)

Anonymous said...

Love your posts...keep them coming....Joy

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