I pray over my children as they fall asleep at night. In prayers it isn't just for them, but the people they will encounter, their future spouses and even us as parents. My favorite thing of all is when they sleep together and my hands are placed on them side by side. My heart just feels overly full during those moments.
Charli Beth recently recieved her new pair of glasses. She was never consistent about wearing her last pair and benign near sighted, it isn't a must that she wears them all of the time. But I must say, that she looks super adorable in them.
She's totally in the stage where she prances around and thinks she's super fabulous in her new specs. She wants to show them off to everyone, even people who have no idea that they're new. I always say that the confidence of a little girl in a new outfit or accessory, is one that I would love to have.
Then out of nowhere last night as Charli was showering she asked me, "When so cool kids start being cool? Like what grade do they start being called, "cool?"
And I literally swallowed my heart.
I sat there for a brief moment trying to grasp the idea that my soon to be over anazlyzing every situation fourth grader, would soon face trails in this area. My mind filled with kids, being kids and wanting to be loved by all. Or the scary factor of, what if my child became that hell cat that bullies everyone?
My motto to Charli has always been, "Have a kind heart." If she ever snips or says something she didn't take the time to think about, I remind her of this. It's my motto in hiding, to never be like her Mother that just grew mean as other became mean.
I tried to think of a story in my life experiences to share with her as I explained. I told her that, "As long as you are friendly to everyone and love them all equally there will never be a definition of cool kid. Cool kids come and they go. But being friends with everyone is a win for them all. There will always be someone who thinks they are better, but that's part of life. As long as you do not let tell yourself that they are, then you will not have to worry about that."
I really had no idea what to say. I fee like I opened my mouth and those words fell out. Praise God that they did.
I then told her about a friend that I had in High School. It was someone I never expected to befriend me. Our school wasn't extremely clique based, we had groups but everyone seemed to mingle. I was quiet and tried to be friends with all, but I just wasn't the best at it. This person really changed my perspective on people in general and how friends should really be. Even as an adult, when I think of friendship, I try to remember this experience.
When I told Charli about my friend, who had treated everyone with the same kindness I could see her smile. She understood exactly what I meant when I told her that the person didn't have to be kind to me, but instead choose to do so. Which is how we should all be, and that we should give grace to others when they make us upset.
If only I had a better perspective on these things as a teenager...
It may not be the perfect form of parenting or the words to say, but it's the best that I know to do. I do know that I had a friend, who made me smile just by simply being kind. As the saying goes, "Nonone can make you feel inferior, without your consent." I must teach my daughter, to have a strong heart but one that isn't overly protected by a brick wall. The brick walls, can be so dangerous for everyone. (This Mother knows all to well about brick walls.)
It stumbled me for quiet sometime through the night that Charli would already be worrying about fitting in. I sat in bed reading and thinking this situation over. Because let's face it, the years of pre-teen drama are coming upon us. It's practically came so fast, I feel as if I'm not ready to parent in that aspect at all.
I wish that I could save my children from heart ache, or the failures of being a friend. But that's impossible. I cannot save her from mean girls. Or the moment when she fails a friend by being snippy. So all I know I can do is teach her, to love everyone, and most of all, to "Have a kind heart."