Tuesday, February 6, 2007

Shrinking World


Before this weekend, I must admit that I was feeling a bit like my world revolved around Abigail, and that was a very small world. It was pressure I was putting on myself to have the perfectly behaved, wallflower of a child so she would disturb no one. Needless to say Abigail is quite the social butterfly who quite enjoys the spotlight. I had completely forgotten the joy toddlers bring to most other people.
Well this weekend, God showed me that Abigail did not shrink my world. I did. She was meant to bless my world. Change it, yes. Force me to become more of everything, yes. But shrink the world, no. That was my doing when I placed unrealistic expectations on myself and on Abigail. Apparently it is not enough for me to be superwoman, but I want Abigail to be super-toddler. We are both failures. We inconvience each other and Chris and well at some point everyone else in our lives. We frustrate and annoy each other and Chris and everyone else in our lives. BUT we also add wonderful things to the world all because we are not super-people. I wonder if any of the middle-schoolers got so much out of the retreat.

I must tell you about the retreat.
Abigail is a social butterfly.
When you add a sleeping toddler to the girl's floor of a dormitory, the girls can giggle much more quietly than you expect.
All middle school girls want to hold a toddler.
25% of middle school boys will acknowledge a toddler, unless the toddler is serving as a distraction from teaching.
All adults want some sort of attention from a toddler.
Men will try to teach a female toddler to flirt even and maybe especially when her father is around.
Abigail now plays blinking games with everyone.
Given the opportunity to dance, Abigail will win the Junior Talent Contest Championship.
Once cheered for, Abigail will try to position herself in front of everyone throughout the rest of the weekend.
When placed on a landing with a railing of ballisters, Abigail will give short shouts so others will turn around to look at her.
At 7 degrees, even Abigail who hates her gloves will hide her hands between me and her as she is carried to dinner.
A mother who dreads taking her toddler to a middle school retreat will learn that many people love her and her child and will love her family more when they return than when they left.
All in all it was a wonderful weekend.

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