"Because I'm beautiful"
I must confess. I have spent the last 2 days trying to hide from my 2 year old. There are some days, days like, well, today, where the distractions just seem too great, when my inability to sit down and hibernate in my own creative little cave and write becomes too overwhelming, and I become overanxious, almost to the point of paralysis. It is on these days when I am least capable of handling my beautiful, active, chatterbox, doll of a daughter. It is on these days where I see the drawing on my walls and think to myself "Oh heaven deliver me from this demon child" instead of, "how sweet and creative, you little stinker," as I should.
And thus, the last couple of days, as something crashed or screams pelted my sensitive ear drums, I have found myself not patiently trying to resolve the issues, but rather, quietly turning around and running as delicately as my slippered feet could carry me to the farthest rooms in the house. I have been very wicked, indeed, foisting my toddler on my poor preteen angel of a daughter, who has nobly taken it upon herself to watch over her sister, as her mother has been conspicuously absent from whatever room they are occupying.
wicked. wicked. Wicked.
But my hiding has not been without consequence. Truly, it has resulted in an amazing amount of new artwork on my walls and even a new waterfall on my bedroom carpet. And so it seems that neglect encourages the artist in my child to blossom. It was not until some time late last night, having excluded myself from the entertainment of American Idol, that I realized how terribly neglectful I have been. I had secluded myself in my oldest daughters' bedroom to read a painfully simple, yet hilarious and romantic tale of a pirate and his lady, when suddenly I heard the anguished cry of my eldest daughter: "Oh, Emmie! What have you done!" and hearing thus, I wearily climbed out of my daughter's bed, closed my book, and set out to find what could only be a miserably discovery.
Alas, I came upon my darling Emmie, who likely for the first time, was feeling her first pangs of shame, the red flush of embarrashment and guilt so prettily flaming her cheeks. And yet, my brave little darling did not try to hide; nor did she shove her hands behind her back like any child riddled with guilt might, but rather, she held out her toes and her fingers for inspection as if she'd just come home from the spa.
"I did my nails," the child said almost proudly.
And so she did, her tiny little fingers and toes covered entirely in bright pink nail polish. I mean, Entirely. Not to say anything of the streaks of hot pink on her cheeks, her arms, and her legs. "And what is that in your hair?" I asked, pained, making a feeble attempt to keep my poor little colt from bolting into the next room.
"I don't know," she said, shrugging her shoulders. "Show me." And so she took my hand into the bathroom and pointed. Well, at least it wasn't glue or vaseline. I hesitate to say what I thought it might be. Thank God it was only half a bottle of liquid soap.
And then her Daddy came upstairs and said, not entirely without anger, "Why did you do this, Emily Elizabeth Miller?" the angry sprays of spittle from his lips all but soaking both Emily and myself.
To this Emmie said quietly, but not without conviction, "Because I'm beautiful."
That's what I get for hiding. An hour of cleaning up nail polish and a late night bath, and I can't even yell at her because, as Emily Elizabeth so aptly stated, she is beautiful.
If only we could all find such value in ourselves, enough to paint ourselves bright pink and sculpt buckets of soap into our hair and still find the strength to say, 'Because I'm beautiful."
Well, and because you left me alone, you dim-wit.