On Monday this little baby,
goes to Grade One. When she was born her clothes were tiny, human clothes in the forms of onesies and baby grows. She had lots of blankets because she is a Winter baby. She has a bear – her name is Snoozie. Snoozie will not be going to Grade One but she still lives on the bed of this little baby.
Today, I offered this little baby the chance to have her first earrings pierced into her ears. She very bravely sat and whimpered while the lady drew little marks on her lobes and as the ‘guns’ were loaded and lifted to her ears, she shouted, “No, I don’t want my ears pierced.” How brave, I thought, she’s been going on about how pretty they will look and how she will look like all her friends (who no doubt were pierced without their consent as infants – but who am I to judge?). This little baby stood up for her right to choose, a difficult thing to do if you’re a child and most of your decisions are made for you, with your best interest at heart, one would hope. Playing up the prettiness of the pearl and gold earrings she had chosen and playing down the stinging momentary pain that it takes to be a pierced earring wearer – the answer was still a resounding ‘No, I do NOT want to have my ears pierced.”
So I have, some opened but unused little gold and pearl earrings if anyone else is interested.
And then came the shoes, with my heart still filled with pride at the strength of this little character that I birthed we hit the Maul of Shoe Stops. Luckily at the first retailer we encountered the Dream School Shoes, “like tap shoes” she describes them. Whisking a pair of socks off the rack they were quickly fitted and the first obligatory ten steps were taken to try them out. She stops, “They’re like magnets and the floor is like the fridge.” She observes.
And I realize, that The Eldest has been barefoot and unrestrained by anything more than a pump, slip slop or wellington boot for the last 6 and half years. These shoes, are the first shoes, to conformity – the first molds that shape her little feet into something that they’re not used to. No more the feeling of sand between her toes, mud that oozes so deliciously, water lapping at her toenails – well not for the 5 hours that she’s at school anyway. That’s all going to be different now, perhaps more appreciated as her tootsies are now encased, for School Work.
And now This Little Baby, continues to walk and live and grow into a new set of rules – for her. I’ve been there and I hope that I can remember what it was like – not to interfere too much but to have some sort of wisdom of experience on my side to guide her. It’s never easy but that doesn’t mean it has to be unpleasant. Wish me luck as I wave her Good-Bye, not for the first time and not for the last.