Killing The 3 Year Old Spirit

I have been baby-sitting a three year old all day today.

I have always thought of baby-sitting as great birth control–this is what it’s REALLY!!!! like!

But as I watched her today, I kept thinking back to Mrs. Fatass‘ post about Thing Two and her eating & dancing naked!. Eating only when she’s hungry, what she wants, when she wants it.

This is true for the three year old as well ‘I am not hungry’ she replied when I offered her apple. For us, we’d eat it most of the time.

But for me there was more.

She skipped down the sidewalks
Hummed as she walked behind me
Played with complete strangers
Curled up when she needed comfort
Uncurled when she was comfortable

It is a blaring reminder that we all have that three year old in us. One who makes up stories when reading books, or shouts out lines that have been read to them 100 of times by diligent and patient readers.

I sat there and looked at her as she was sleeping, and now as she is slowly waking up from a need nap as she makes me chest sweat with her body warmth, and wonder if she too will harness her innocence, beauty and inner-spirit.

We as women, mothers, fathers, parents, human beings has the duty to not only enable this spirit with our children in our lives…but also for ourselves. We become the greatest detriment everyday of what the little people in this world become.

As I look at her sleepy little eyes open, I am reminded that perhaps this experience isn’t birth control for me today…rather it’s degrading control. If I am ever blessed with a man in my life and babies…I hope that I am not on a diet, bitching about my weight, hating the way I look and making sure that I put myself last.

Cause really, that kills the 3 year old spirit in anyone.


8 thoughts on “Killing The 3 Year Old Spirit

  1. Sarah says:

    LOVED this (do I say that about every post you write?!). I hope I remember that when/if I become a mama and also around the kids I already have the privilege of spending time with day-to-day.

  2. missyrayn says:

    Wow! I have the guy and I still complain about my body. I complain about the extra skin and the things I don’t like and pull myself apart some days.

    This really struck home that I need to be thankful for the blessing it is to be healthy and safe and loved. And sure I may want to work on things but beating myself up isn’t working so maybe I should try something new.

    Thanks Mish!

  3. KCLAnderson (Karen) says:

    Something just went “click” for me. I have cats. I have Claude, an old 13-year-old grouchy/needy male; Bella, a two year old gentle, sweet female; and Starla, a 3-month old cute-as-can-be scrappy little girl.

    Bella, from the time we got her at 4 months, likes to “nurse.” She’ll find a bit of exposed skin on my arm or neck, and go through the “nursing” motions: kneading, pushing her nose/mouth against my skin, and making sucking noises. I read somewhere that the reason she does it because she was probably weaned too young.

    And it made me realize that when nurturing is either taken away too soon, or not given enough, then certain behaviors will continue and maybe even be a problem. What Bella does isn’t a problem for me unless her nails are too sharp 🙂 And I know she gets comfort from it.

    Claude came from a feral litter and has always been skitterish and a little weird. When he seeks comfort it’s like he doesn’t know how to “be” with it and it’s really annoying and so he probably doesn’t get everything he needs from me. And maybe that’s why he’s grouchy.

    Then there’s little Starla, who sounds like the little girl you babysat for. She’s still new and unspoiled and full of the spirit of being a baby who gets her needs me. She’ll come running over to my desk after a morning of play, jump up and cry and sort of slump in my arms because she needs a nap and needs Mom to soothe her.

    I don’t know where I am going with all of this, but thought it was the right place to put it down 🙂

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