Sunday, January 18, 2009

age of innocence

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Berkeley will turn four in less than three months, and conversations with her just get more fun each day.  I guess being the second child, she’s always been more of a talker since she has Kendall to listen to and learn from.  Even before she was two, she was talking well enough that most people could understand her, and Kendall was much later to develop those skills.

Berkeley and I were playing a card game this afternoon while Kendall was out home teaching with Patrick, and Emery was napping.  She won four games in a row (no, I wasn’t letting her!) and was so cute after each game.  She wouldn’t get too excited so as not to rub it in to me that I lost, but she’d just get a huge grin across her face and say, “I don’t know why I keep winning!”  After her fourth win, she patted my arm and said, “Mom, let’s play again.  I know you can win this time!”

A couple hours later, Patrick and I were having a conversation with Kendall about some issues she’s been having with lying to us.  Berkeley said, “Kendall, I’m sorry you’re having some trouble.  All you have to do is tell the truth!”

She’s also starting to become more sensitive about her birthmark.  Up until this point, it never really seemed to bother her.  Of course, people have always asked about it since it is so prominent on her upper lip, but she’s always said, “It’s my birthmark,” very matter-of-factly and then went on with whatever she was doing.  Just the other day, she came up to me out of the blue and said, “I don’t know why Heavenly Father gave me this birthmark.  I did NOT ask him for this!”  We talked about it for a little while, and I reminded her that the doctors all say it will probably go away anywhere between the ages of 5 and 7.  Then she wanted to know how it would go away and exactly when.  “But how come my lip doesn’t look like everyone else’s?”  It just broke my heart to hear her say that.  Berkeley has such a strong personality that I didn’t think it ever bothered her.  Now she’s starting to feel a little self-conscious and I hate that.  We talk about how everyone is different and it would be no fun if everyone was exactly the same.  She still knows she’s beautiful and she tells me all the time how cute or pretty she is, but is there anything else I can say to help the thoughts going on in that cute little head of hers?

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Maren said...

Joseph is a liar, too. He would tell the most outrageous stories in preschool, his teacher once told me that he said I was being chased by the police and I was trying to outrun them. I asked her what I should about his lying, and she said, "Nothing, it just means he has a healthy imagination." So he still tells crazy stories, and he uses them to get himself out of trouble or someone else in trouble, and at one point I brought up the issue with his 1st grade teacher (because he was trying to get someone in trouble...). And she says, "I agree with his preschool teacher. Let him develop his imagination." Not sure how I feel about that.

So sorry, no help on the Berkeley question, but how did your little chat with Kendall go? Any tips?

Erin said...

oh sweet girl! i love conversations with children.
i think it is natural for children to start feeling self conscious around her age. Liam started being a little less sure of himself once he had started preschool. I think it is spending time around peers without parents. But, really, I know nothing when it come to child development.
good luck!

Keepin' up with the Jones' said...

i love berks. seriously, she is so funny. she's smart, sassy, spunky and every other adjective i can think of that starts with an s. it breaks my heart to hear that about her birthmark. you tell her that her aunt paige loves her and can't wait to see her again and do her hair and make up make her smell pretty!

Sarah said...

What a sweet little girl! You know, the doctors told my Mom that my birthmark would fade when I reached adolesence, and it never did. I even tried several laser surgery treatments for it, but it almost seemed to get brighter. I think I had moments similar to Berkeley, wondering why I had to be given a birthmark, but for the most part, I was ok with it. I think it even made me stronger. If you can help her not worry about what other people think, then she'll be just fine. It seems like she is already that way.
I think most of my struggles actually came from my Mom, because she was concerned what other people would think and wanted me to wear makeup at a young age. But I didn't care. And I still had tons of friends who didn't care either. So probably the less you bring it up, the better. She'll get through this phase!

Kristina said...

So funny. Kids are hilarious. Mason just turned 4 and I swear he's funnier every day. I love that life is never boring with 4 year olds around.

Corrine said...

that is a tough situation, i think you have handled things well with her. I think its just she is getting older like you said and she is smart and just notices others don't have similar birthmarks.

she is so cute and i think that was so sweet about the playing the game again so you could win.

Dana said...

Mason hasn't noticed his at all yet. He probably thinks it should be there. Wyatt just noticed it last month and asked how Mason got his "ouchie". Did he seriously JUST NOW notice it?? All kids have things to get past and I agree that it will only make them stronger and develop a great personality. Still, I am also hopeful that these will go away with time.

molly kay said...

You are so great at blogging the every day occurance- I feel like I only blog when there has been an event or something. I need to get better. Your girls are so cute! I hesitated to even comment because you have like 50 million comments on here! Also, I didn't see our name on your list of blogs- what's up with that? Thomas should of stopped in to see you on his way back from SC but he went there and back in a day so he could get home. He went to Spartansburg. Since you guys are so close, you should definitely put Dollywod and the Smokies on your list of places to visit! Miss you- Moll

merathon said...

moll-- i haven't updated that friends list on my sidebar in ages, which is why yours wasn't up there. i follow it through my bloglines, so i'd just forgotten to add it. i just did, though, so don't worry!

Mirien said...

I agree with Sarah. I think having a birthmark on my nose made me stronger. Not that I wasn't self-conscious sometimes when other kids pointed it out, but as I got older I realized that my real friends never gave it a thought. I felt like I always knew that people liked me for me, and not because of my looks. But there was that time in 5th grade when I took an emery board and tried to sand my nose, thinking I could smooth it out and make it less noticeable...not my brightest idea.