Thursday, May 3, 2012

Childhood Innocence or Mini Yoda?

I babysat last night... because... well... I'm getting married and need all the money I can get. And... I love these girls so they are my special exception. (And the only ones offering. Haha)

These girls are super special. I've known them for the better part of the past 5 years. When they were 3 and 8. Now they are 8 and 12. My how times flies.

My relationship has grown with them over the years. I find myself being protective of them like they are my own kids. Sometimes, I see them doing something in front of their parents and I just want to tell them to stop before they hurt themselves. But, the parents don't say anything, so I keep my mouth shut. If they aren't worried then I guess I shouldn't be.

Plus, they've got some years of parenting on me, so I guess they know what they are talking about.

The past few times I have babysat, the older one has soccer practice. Now, this girl is AMAZING at sports. Seriously. Her skills and dedication are something to be admired. (And the fact that she was talking about how she was upset that she can only run the mile at school in 7 minutes and has been trying to run it in 6 may or may not make me want to cry. At the age of 26, I run it in more like twice that. Ug... moving on...)

Since she is at soccer practice, I get some QT with the younger one. It never proves to be boring. She has a lot of opinions and insight that make her wise beyond her years. I mean c'mon... she was talking about how she wanted a chocolate diamond from Jared's for her birthday... girl after my own heart!

I thoroughly enjoy our talks, because she always gives me some perspective that I never thought about. Some perspective that I like to pretend that I thought of on my own, without the influence of an 8 year old. (Check out more of her cute little chickies moments here).

Last night, she was telling me about a friend of hers. She was talking about how they got paired up for a project and she and him asked the teach to please separate them. They had talked and decided that they couldn't work together. It wouldn't end well. She said that he gets "super sarcastic" when he is around her and she gets "wicked negative" when he is around.

Really? Anyway...

So, the teacher separated them as requested. My chickie then went on to talk about how she really liked this friend, but it just never ended well when they were together. They constantly fought. Got in trouble. You name it. So they decided that they weren't allowed to hang out anymore.

I then went on to explain what this friendship was like. I told her it was a "toxic friendship". I asked her if she knew what that meant and she had a pretty good idea, so I just explained it a little more and she seemed perfect satisfied with my explanation.

The thing that got me though, is how long did it take me to realize when a relationship was toxic. Whether it was friendship or more. It took me forever to SEE this. To know that it wasn't right. And to unfortunately cut my ties with this person. And it wasn't pretty.

Took me forever to realize that sometimes, people can be two really good people. Sane people. And they just bring the absolute WORST out of each other. And it isn't anyone's fault. It just happens. Despite everyone's best efforts it just never goes well. I've had quite a few of these relationships. As much as it pained me to let them go, I knew I had to. For me and for them. If I truly cared about them and myself, I needed to let them go.

And this 8 year old... totally gets that. Completely understands. Makes perfect sense.

I'm not in the habit of saying that 3rd graders are smarter than I am, but she's got me beat on this one.

Then I wondered. Will it always make sense to her? Will it always be this easy? Will it always come so naturally to her? A part of me wants to box her up and put her in a closet forever. To keep her innocence bottled up, so that she never has to learn anything the hard way. Never has her heart broken. Never has to know what it feels like. There's a certain kind of innocence that goes with that. Never having your heart broken.

That was one of the things that drew me to Big A. He's never had his heart broken. And I never wanted to be the one who did it.

Anyway... now I feel that I am all over the place. My point is, that I wonder if we all have those perspectives in life. The ones that just make absolute perfect sense at the age of 8, but then we forget over the years. We smudge the lines a bit. Push the boundaries. And one day we find out that we lost where the line was all together.

OR... is this little girl just way too smart for her own good?

Thoughts?

1 comment:

  1. That little one is very smart for her age. And I now wonder too. I think we did know it, but we push the envelope and hope for the best the older we get. things are simpler when its black and white, no?

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