Have you ever had that moment when you realized you just stole the joy from your child? I have and it’s a hard one to digest.
A couple weeks ago, we heard the excitement in Olivia’s voice as she showed off her fancy made bed to her brothers. The boys had cleaned and made their beds early in the evening and she wanted to be a big kid like them and do hers all by herself. She proudly came running into the living room shouting to her dad and I …
“I made my bed! It’s pretty colors! Come see! Come see!”
Of course we went without hesitation to her bedroom. There, we found about 10 multicolored baby blankets neatly flattened across her bed. She had done such a wonderful job getting them just right. I praised her on a job well done and her great choice of colors and asked, “Are you going to sleep under all those pretty colors tonight?” She quickly replied, “Yep!”
In a completely innocent attempt to give her something special, I said, “Hang on, I have something special for you!”
I ran to the closet and pulled out the most special blanket. My grandmother did a lot of sewing. My mother kept many of my grandmothers fabrics. She had cut out some Holly Hobby dolls (the profile view of the little country girl wearing a bonnet) and never did anything with them. Well, several years ago, my mom had a large quilt made for me with those dolls and before we ever even knew about Olivia, she also had a toddler blanket made from them, just in case I ever had a little girl :)
I went in Olivia’s room with this awesome little blanket I’d been dying to give her. I started to remove her beautiful arrangement of blankets and place the new blanket on her bed. With excitement, I said, “Here, this is a very special blanket that Nana had made just for you! Don’t you love it?”
To my dismay, she didn’t. I had ruined her moment. Although I had the best of intentions, I had minimized the specialness of her sweet combination of colorful blankets arranged so perfectly on her little bed.
In the end, she did love her new blanket special from Nana. And for years to come, I will remind her just how special it is that it’s made from my Nana’s fabric and a gift from her Nana.
Right now, this was a reminder to me though, to enjoy her moments, for her. To let her have her moments and to build her up through her own creativity. It was an awakening that I don’t have to fix everything or try to make everything better. Sometimes things are just right the way she chooses.
© The Imperfect Princess at theimperfectprincess.com