Friday, February 21, 2014

Nobody Puts Baby In A Corner

As we sat around the dinner table tonight, the talk was about the most important part of the school day: recess.  Gracie's been playing soccer lately and I had assumed she was actually doing the running around, kicking the ball part.  Not so.  Apparently, these little turkeys she's playing with are "making" her be goalie every time and she is understandably getting a little tired of it.  Her story was corroborated by Johnny, who would be the very first to shout out any inaccuracies.

I asked who was making her be goalie and it's some boys from her class.  I'm sure they aren't being mean about it (I've met a few and they are mostly sweet), but someone has to be goalie and they don't want to, so they tell Gracie - who really, really wants to play - it's her job.

Mama hit the roof.  In a big, big way.

I'm going to have to talk to her about it again before she goes back to school because my reaction and advice was disorganized and generally unsound.  Looking back on what I said, it probably would not be a great idea for my eensy little girl to get in their grill and give these boys the impression that a can of something was about to be opened up and that she was NOT going to play goalie anymore.

I mean, she wants to play and she needs to come up with an answer that gets her what she wants - to not play goalie all the time - but doesn't infuriate these boys so much that they don't let her play at all.  A don't-argue-with-me-just-do-it "no". 

What I really want to do, more than anything, is to march up there during recess on Monday and start directing traffic so these little kindergarten lovelies figure out how to take turns and not tell my daughter what to do.

That would be unacceptable.  Effective, but unacceptable.  

Tuesday, February 11, 2014


Ainsley's going to her first real slumber party soon.  To help keep myself from an anxiety attack, I felt compelled to have a mostly one-sided discussion with her about what sometimes happens conversation-wise with giggling girls when it's way past bedtime and they've been on a sugar bender for hours.  They're still pretty young and maybe Ainsley isn't as naive as I believe or want her to be, but who knows what they might talk about and my child - who has yet to watch a show with real actors (well, Fresh Beat Band and Imagination Movers) - really hasn't had a lot of exposure to the outside world.  

So I cornered her when there was absolutely no potential for younger sibs to interrupt and we (I) talked about the fact that sometimes girls talk about things that might make you feel uncomfortable and all you have to say is "I don't know" or "".  She doesn't have to give a reason.  She doesn't have to change the conversation, just bow out.    So she just looked at me like I was a weirdo and I felt bizarrely compelled to give her a sample conversation:

"Okay. So some of the girls might talk about boys and they might ask you if you like one.  You don't have to answer.  Even if there is a boy you like you don't have to answer.  Got it? And if they bug you about it and it makes you feel awkward, just keep saying you don't know. Okay?!"

There had better not be a cute boy.  I'm not ready for that.