Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Our little coquette

It's come to our attention that our little Brodie is without a doubt either boy crazy or impatient with girls. She used to mention some girls as friends, but now she says that the girls are mean and she only likes the boys. I'm pretty sure not all the girls can be mean, but it does make me worry. Isn't it way too early to be dealing with this? I thought I had at least until adolescence to learn how to offer the best advice and support - she's not even FOUR yet. Anyway, I've mentioned the threesome of Tirso, Jaime and Jorge "Pepinosa", but we've confirmed that Jorge is definitely not a crush and is someone who just annoys her and that Jaime is definitely her first crush. We arrived from Sevilla on Sunday and not long after Brodie wanted to cut Jaime's picture out of the school magazine, paste it along with hers onto a piece of paper and give it to him at school. She art directed and I did some of the work. We pasted each photo on a green piece of paper, wrote each name under the photo and wrote "Amigos" at the top. At first I thought this was a charming gesture, but it soon dawned on me that Jaime may only be the OBJECT of her affection and that he may not actually share her clear adoration. I immediately envisioned him laughing at her, crumpling it up and throwing it at her feet as he laughed villainously. I went through a couple of scenarios preparing her for other reactions from Jaime mainly emphasizing that he may not understand her or her intentions and I was sure he would never hurt her feelings on purpose. I stayed up Sunday night worrying about this and discussed my fear of her heart breaking with Kyle. The next morning we headed out with the card in her pocket and Kyle asked me to call him to tell him how it went - he was worried too! Sadly, it rained so she wasn't able to see Jaime because he's in another class and they only see each other at play time. The next day, Tuesday, just as we arrived at school, Brodie shouted, "There's my friend, Jaime!" Perfect, I thought, I'll lay the groundwork for the card exchange. I introduced myself to him and told him that Brodie had something for him. He said that he knew because his teacher had already told him. (Brodie had given it to her teacher for safekeeping and she must have then told Jaime's teacher - what a stir we were causing!) I asked him if he knew what it was. "Yes, a photo." "Do you want it?" He smiled, "Yes!" Ahhhhhh! I could quit worrying about my baby's heart! Then right out of a cheesy Hallmark movie, they walked off into the schoolyard and after a few seconds grabbed hands. Seriously, I can't believe I allowed myself to get all worked about this. But still, I know that from here on out kids only get older and meaner. I know I'm projecting my own fears and experiences (in 6th grade I begged my mother to let me switch schools because some mean 8th grade girls made fun of the way I dragged my feet. They'd say "scuffle, scuffle, scuffle. I had NO idea how easy I had it!) onto Brodie, but I want to protect her from all things mean! I think all signs point to me having wayyyyyyyyy to much time on my hands. Something tells me if I had a work deadline looming I'd be less neurotic. And that brings me to child #2. What is it with babies crying? Have you ever noticed that? Honestly mine doesn't cry all that much, but I've decided I'm just a nervous type of person and don't handle crying all that well. If it were 1952, I feel certain that I'd be described as afflicted with a "bad case of nerves" and I'm pretty sure other members of my family would agree. Fine then, please ship me off to the country to sit in therapeutic waters and sip hard liquor. Dare to dream.


  1. As a mother of 2 boys, let me share my experience with you.....When Brandon was in pre-school the girls on the playground would see us come in and whisper "Brandon's here!" then they would line the walk way and smile at him saying "hiiiiii Braaaaandon!" This was intimidating for me to walk through a reception line like that, but he seemed oblivious to it. The girls seemed to like him because he was one of the few boys who didn't mind including the girls or playing with them -- training that comes from having a little sister. Anyway, the girls get into the crush mode very early but the boys seem to be oblivious to it for a long time. It really wasn't until last year that Brandon started to show negative signs. He had a very good friend in third grade who was a girl. I suppose he was teased by his friends that she was his "girlfriend." I noticed at some point that he wasn't as friendly to her. He explained to me that if his friends saw, they would tease him. We had a long talk about that one, and I believe he has changed his approach.

    With the crying.....I know it is difficult, but it really is the only way she has to express herself. Just imagine her being 5 and in her little voice saying, "mommy, mommy, mommy, mommy, mommy, mommy." No less annoying, but certainly less troubling.

  2. The end of Kelly's post made me laugh. When they're small babies with no words we watch them with adoring curiosity as they burble and gurgle, wondering what they're trying to say. Then when they're three and can voice their thoughts, it's like, Oh, is that all you were trying to say? "Mama, mama, mama,mama, I don't like this, can I have a popsicle, where's my balloon, I don't wanna do that, can I have a popsicle?" Like the silent guys we used to think were mysterious and then learned, nope, they've just got nothing to say.

    Sadly, and I hope it's not the case with Brodie's girl classmates, but girls can be mean, correcting, excluding and tattle tale-y. Traits that I just don't see much of in the boys at Willa's school. With the boys, there are no hurt feelings and they just barrel through conflicts - mentally and physically. They're happy to include anyone in their game, so long as the focus stays on the game.