Post-It Notes 02-March-2012
There are always at least a dozen Post-It notes on my desk, often more. Sometimes the kids sneak one in there for me to find later, like, “Don’t forget to wear pants when you leave the house, Dad.” Or “Sackboy Ezra Loves you Dad!” It’s sort of their way of communicating with the whirlwind inside my head that I’m trying to organize when I sit down at the computer, I think?
Most of my own notes are just reminders though, or story ideas. One that’s been there for more than a month says simply, “Sophie’s Butt”. I wrote it one morning after dropping the kids off at their other home, when I came to my 8 year old daughter’s defense while she was being berated for having a ‘huge butt’, only to have Sophie stop me mid-defense by saying, “No, she’s right, Dad. My butt is a size 10 and I’m only 8 years old. It’s too big.” I don’t have any kind words for that situation, so I’ll stop there. Point being, I came home and wrote a Post-It about her butt, because I didn’t know how to fix that situation. And I still don’t. I don’t even know how to do damage control on it. And there is obviously damage to be mitigated. She truly believes her butt is too big. Not that it would matter if it was too big, but atop the issue of self-image, the reality is that she is a perfectly shaped and sized 8 year old girl. It never fails to amaze me how readily and easily reality can be bent by evil, and how difficult it is to reshape reality once it has a big crease in it.
This story is supposed to be comedy! Last night as I was pilfering for a different note, I found that Sophie had added a Q&A session to my initial, simple, “Sophie’s Butt” note… as well as a cute little drawing of a butt! (That drawing made me laugh really hard. Thanks, Baby, I needed that!) I had come back to that note several times over the past month without being able to find the right ‘words’ or ‘talk’ to have with her about it. As is often the case, she found a way to help me talk about it. All I had to do was listen. She hasn’t seen my response yet, but I put the note on the kitchen table where she’ll see it today after school.
I’m a ‘balance’ person. (Sophie tells me that’s Ying/Yang, but I wouldn’t have learned about that if not for my kids.) I believe that there is a silver lining in every situation, although I readily admit that it is often very difficult to find. Here’s today’s silver lining though… my kids can, and often do, talk to me about anything. They know they can. Often, our deepest talks arise from situations much like this one. Situations I wish they weren’t in, yet at the same time, the very situations that drive many of the deep talks that have made us very close as a family. In this case, this very short little exchange on a Post-It note that Sophie found on my desk will probably be far more effective than any long talk I could have prepared for her on the issue.
If there is an equal and opposite reaction for every action in the universe, as both the Ying/Yang and your high school science teacher would have you believe there is, then I’m glad I’m on the ‘up side’ of that balancing act. Sometimes evil loses the war in the process of winning the battle simply because it doesn’t realize it’s part of a greater circle. So be it. I can’t change it. Maybe that’s what I’m supposed to learn from it? If I can’t change it, I should put my energy into the benefits that come from it? Those benefits will be the foundation for beautiful things long after the effects of the lost battle are long forgotten? Let’s hope. Let’s… hope…
Cheers from The ThreeFiveZero Butts