We had a busy afternoon with a family birthday party. tLG played hard with her cousins. By the time we got home, she was noticeably tired and crashing hard from the cake and ice cream sugar rush. Saturday is also known as “hair washing night” ’round these here parts. My girl was fussing about bath time and declared Saturdays to be “no fun.” I’m washing her up and trying to remind her about all the fun things that happen on Saturdays but she’s not really buying it. I speed things up sensing that a meltdown is on the horizon. My plan is just to get her in the bed ASAP.
When I get her out of the tub she is naturally complaining about being cold so I wrapped her in a towel and snuggled her up in my lap. At this point, the drama girl says she can’t possibly stand up for me to blow dry her hair. Shocker. Sometimes, as a mom, you know when your kid has had enough or when you can push them to continue with the plan. This was not one of those times. So, I met her remark with the option to sit up on the countertop in the sink. Even with me throwing her a bone, it was met with frumpy compliance. But having her big girl body up in the sink gave me a flash back to 4 years prior when her much smaller body was a frequent flyer in the bathroom sink while I would get ready.
As I’m drying her hair, I’m watching her yawn and watching those big brown eyes get heavy. I’m brushing through her soft brown hair that I had threatened to cut off just the week before. I’m filled with compassion for my girl knowing that she’s had a big day, knowing that this grumpiness isn’t really her fault, realizing that I’m not at my best when I’m tired too.
The words come falling out of my mouth, “you are so beautiful.” At first I get no response so I continue my job of brushing and drying. Then, if I would have blinked I would have missed it. I caught a glance of a subtle smile, a quick blush, and a sheepish close to her eyes. I have just lifted her spirit with four simple words. These are words that I know in my soul to be true but words that I probably don’t say enough. I began to think about other truths that I know in my heart but fail to express to the person who needs to hear them the most. I relish in that little smile for one more second and say “you are smart and you know what else… you are funny too. You love animals and you are a great artist! There are so many things that I love about Skylar.”
And you know what… the rest of the bedtime routine wasn’t so bad. In fact, it went rather smoothly. I was 100% prepared for a fight and four little words turned around the whole situation. Sometimes we just have to be reminded that we are special and that there are those who love us in spite of ourself.