Friday, August 26, 2011
Fire and Sass
Ms. Lilly has "fire"--a sassy spunk that curls my toes with utter frustration and makes me want to jump and shout, "Hooray," at the same time. She is fiesty. She puts her hand on her hip often. She walks the runway (that is, the shag carpet in my living room) with a diva attitude and a "don't mess with me" flare. She happily answers to, "Your Highness."
I love it. And I hate it.
I hate it when she cops serious sass and informs me that she's moving to the neighbor's house:
Me: Raul and Bertha's? They are very nice, but they don't speak much English. Do YOU know Spanish?
Ms. Lilly (eyes rolling, of course): NO, Mom! But they have a dog.
I hate it when she tells me I'm not her favorite parent anymore. (Punch-in-the-gut insulting, right? Especially when you consider my competition....McHubby? Really? HE'S the better parent???) Or when she accuses me of not loving her anymore:
Me: You bet I love you, Lil! What would make you say such a thing?
Ms. Lilly: Well...you didn't get me any apple juice.
Me (irked): You didn't ask!!
I hate it when she dumps the dirty laundry all over my floor, coaxes Cam into the hamper, then immediately blames HIM for all the mischief:
Me: So...Cam did this all by himself?
Ms. Lilly: What can I say...he's a crazy baby.
I kind of love it when she scrambles up our bulky, age-worn sofa with those skinny legs; climbing until she is perched on top of it like a baby chickadee. She slowly stands and surveys the toy-cluttered landscape of the living room. Then, with a flick of her ponytail and an over-the-shoulder glance at Camren (who is sitting on the floor), she yells, "Watch and learn, baby!"
And then, she jumps.
My little girl leaps from the couch and lands in an impressive Tom Cruise-esque "tuck and roll" that resembles a stunt from a Mission Impossible flick. She shows no fear.
I believe her fire--her ferocity--is what gives her the courage to take that leap. As she grows and matures into a lovely, smart woman, I hope she never loses her fire. When she is told she's not good enough, when she feels she's not pretty enough, when she wonders and worries, when she loves and loses, when she doesn't make the grade, when she feels lost or down-trodden, when a man breaks her heart, when disappointment outweighs hope on life's scale, I hope she climbs high above it. I hope courage and strength and a unabashed belief in her own magnificence will give her the confidence to jump; to overcome her unique challenges. I hope she'll remember to say to the world, "Watch and learn," because God did not send her to earth to fail.
With a little bit of faith, she'll soar.