Thursday, March 10, 2011

An Unexpected Fairy Tale

"Fairy tales are more than true: not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be beaten."

Over the last couple weeks, I have seen a change in my daughter. I've always heard about this year...the seven year old stage...being a quite challenging one. Different than the drama from the younger years. In keeping with her usual pattern, things have been, well, let's just say...even more "dramatic".

This morning, similar to others recently, she told us, "she wasn't going to school". To which, I laugh, and say, "Oh, really? Get up, now." To which she pouts and stomps. To which, her father says, "Sweet girl, be careful with your attitude."

Then, when I went to pack her lunch, I saw that she had chosen to waste her lunch that we had packed for her yesterday, and instead chose to buy lunch, even though we've talked about that quite a few times before. The consequence? That she would owe us a few dollars from her money, to cover the lunch that she bought this week (yes it happened twice this week). If there's anything I hate, it's throwing perfectly good food away. So, she would have to pay us out of her money. Money that she had been saving for a Bitty Baby, and that she finally "just got" enough to buy. You can imagine how that conversation went.

More than anything else with her, I plead with the Lord to keep our relationship a sweet one. One without the heightened emotional fights, and the drama induced conversations constantly affecting our relationship. I realize, this is a lot to ask. I'm asking for the impossible. But, what I'm really asking, is not for her to quit being dramatic, I'm really asking for my heart to be the one changed. The challenge is more my challenge. To allow the Lord to keep me steady, calm, and unaffected by the tantrums, yelling, or bad attitudes. To remain loving, yet firm in my position. To love, without conditions for her to live up to. To not take things personally...this might be the hardest one. *sigh* It's quite a challenge already, and she hasn't even been seven 2 weeks.

This morning, after we got past the issues at hand, I sat down and read with her for a moment before she headed out the door. When we finished reading, she came over to me. And, after being emphatic on us "not touching her" because of how mad she was at us, before she ran out the door, she came over and gave me a big hug and kissed my cheek...twice.

The other morning, when she was late for school, and running out the door, she ran back in to give me this. Even though my first reaction was to say, "Honey, you don't have time to pick a flower!", hearing her say, "Here Mom, I picked this for you!" all I could do was hug her and say, "Thank you, sweet girl. I love you." Looking at it again this morning, it reminded me that maybe there is still hope. Maybe, just maybe, we'll get through it, and beat this ferocious dragon.

I think about how it will be, this year, and on down the road...into the years ahead, and I hope and pray that we will be able to say that our love is a happily ever after kind of love. It's asking for a fairy tale ending, to an impossible quest, and yet, I still ask for it to be so.


  1. I love this post. What a sweet daughter you have and my prayers will be with you for your relationship with her, that it continues to grow and flourish.

  2. hey...this totally made me tear up! first of all you and randy are great parents! and riv is so lucky to have you! keep the faith and the constant in this new "year" of adventures! oh and take some notes for the rest of us! much love to you friend!

  3. I love your honesty, open heart and faith in looking at everything. You'll be fine, Melissa! River is a lovely girl and this is just a little bump in the road.

  4. Sweet Melissa, this post made my heart ache a little, remembering the difficult years with my own little female (who's 24 now). There may be some perplexing, even frustrating, years ahead, but you've got the right attitude, and a God who will be there, to get you both through them. I think more than anything else, looking back, kids need to know they are loved unconditionally, and that home is always going to be a safe place to go. They don't have to be perfect at home (it's ok to get upset, for we're all human, but mutual respect is expected), and nothing is off-limits to talk about.

    Please know that these little stages are only temporary, and every parent travels through them at one time or another. Keep the faith!

  5. Thank you for writing this post - I'll have to refer back to it when Pascal gets old enough to have his own drama and I'll be unsure of how to handle it/him. Your relationship with River sounds like a real and healthy one to me:)