First & foremost, THANK YOU for reading my previous post. It was a piece of my heart & mind put on 'paper' & it was so comforting to hear from some of you. Thank you for sharing your own emotions & thoughts....hearing your 'voice' is my most favorite part of blogging :-)
We're emerging from the holiday hangover which brought with it lots of merry get-togethers plus visiting family members (we miss you crazy Austin, TX crew). I hope the first days of 2016 are bringing you good health, good spirits, & a bright perspective! And that you're not still writing 2015 on checks, forms, etc.
I don't have resolutions to share nor do I have one of those blog-year-in-review thingies because, well, I think you actually have to blog to have one of those ;-) I aim to practice mindfulness more than ever this year. Last year I made an effort to put down my phone & be more present......my blog & Instagram suffered but my bank of memories did not. I hope to build on more habits like this in 2016.
A goal this month is to set up Quinn's new bed & implement some other small changes to her room. Being the mindful mother that I aim to be, I asked Quinn for her input on how she wanted her big girl room. My recently turned 4 year old rambled: "I want yovey (lovely) butterflies-superheroes-princesses-and-hedgehogs. But dat is OK if you can't find hedgehogs as yong as you give me the other tings."
What the f#*$ kind of room theme did my kid just ask for?!? I stared at her & then laughed & then covered my face with my hair because I don't think you're supposed to laugh this hard at your kid's opinions. (I'll let you know when you can pre-order my book on succeeding daily at parenting. Will probs be on Amazon's best-seller list.)
For lack of a better term, I'm calling this phase 'Quinn's Big Girl Room' but honestly not too many major things are changing from her original nursery reveal. Wall color (Benjamin Moore Grant Beige), armchair, drapes, rug, & clear book shelves are all staying. The branch wall decal's coming down. The dresser was sold last year. Here's the Big Girl Room plan. Some items have already been purchased & I WILL blog the result, I swear! Unless I don't ;-)
To be honest, I feel trivial blogging about design, holiday decor, & our life's sweet moments without acknowledging all that's going on with the world & our nation.
We were prepping for Quinn's birthday party to take place the next day when the Mr. happened to glance at his phone. Upon seeing what had ripped thru Paris, he shakily exhaled & the words "Oh no, not again." escaped before he could carefully edit his reaction for Quinn's benefit. When she asked what happened....he & I glanced at each other as parents so often do when trying to explain weighty things to their child. We very much believe in giving honest answers while still guarding her innocence.
I somberly said that a lot of people were hurt by some people who did a terrible thing in a city called Paris. "Did people die?" Quinn asked (we've been gently navigating the topic of death lately as she has asked about our good old dog Hiro, who passed away a few years ago).
Our words, meant to reassure, flew at her. "Oh honey.....yes. We're safe though, we don't want you to worry." "And there are lots of very brave, good people helping the people in Paris right now."
She searched my tired eyes with her bright hazel ones. Sometimes, in between her goofy-wildness, I get glimpses of an old soul. "It's nice that there's brave people there & that they're good to each other." she finally said. And that was that.
I agreed emphatically, silently relieved that she didn't have more questions we would probably have to answer with "I don't know why these things happen, honey."
And here we are again....those souls lost in San Bernardino. And Colorado Springs last week. And on and on and on it goes......like a sick, nightmarish list.
I'd be pretending if I didn't say this: the fear of our times flits thru my mind when the lights go down in a theatre, or when I pass a police officer, or when I board a plane, or when I squeeze Quinn tight before I leave her classroom every day.
But in this particular moment with Quinn, I was struck by how her four year-old mind sifted thru our words. How she chose to focus on the good & the brave. Isn't this what we all strive to do in these times? To not let fear take over? That despite the darkness, we can choose to remember that there are still far more people who are good & brave in this world. There is still love & light & humanity.
However, when Quinn does ask "Why? Why doesn't it stop?", I just won't be able to have an answer for my girl.