Archive for February, 2013

Isn’t she lovely?

Posted in Uncategorized on February 5, 2013 by Misanthropic Mom's Group

My daughter asked me the other day if there are things about myself physically that I would want to change (other than my hair color, obviously). Naturally the first thing out of my mouth was, “Yes, lots.”

Naturally I regretted that immediately, but I do try to be honest with my kids.

Now, being Tuki, she had to know WHAT I would change. That girl is like a terrier with a bone when she gets her teeth into a topic. She has the eyes of an eagle for spotting when you want to change the subject too. Basically a pan-animal chimera that feeds off of parental squirming and coffee candy. So I carefully avoided all topics related to weight, since I really don’t want to introduce THAT particular societal evil before it absolutely MUST be addressed, but I had to admit to something. I told her that when I was in Junior High I desperately wanted a smaller nose, but that I don’t care so much anymore. Amazingly she let it go at that, but then my mommy heart broke into tiny pieces when she said she also really wants a smaller nose. And “better eyebrows”.

Better eyebrows?

I asked what on earth better eyebrows were, and she said that she wanted them to be shaped better and “not all scraggly”. We were pulling in to the garage by then, so I merely suggested that if she really cares particularly she can pluck them. That was not really appealing to the girl who can’t bear the slightest pain, so we pretty much left it at that.

But it ate at me.

My daughter is nine. I want to scream that she should not care about her eyebrows, but I know that is not particularly helpful. But the thing is, she is also heartbreakingly beautiful. We are not talking mom-thinks-I’m-beautiful pretty. We are talking strangers come up to her to tell her how pretty she is, and then sometimes give her things, pretty. She is slender and has gorgeous long long hair and startlingly pretty eyes. She has a sweet enough smile, but she has a truly awe inspiring scowl. And a glare to die for. So I honestly thought maybe I’d get to dodge a bullet  with feminine insecurity. I mean if and when she decides to choose a gender to be attracted to, appropriate members of said selected gender will most likely spend their nights perched on our back fence, like cats, just waiting to shower her with adulation.

I’m going to need to buy a better hose.

Of course it matters less than not at all what your mom thinks of you, because our opinions are suspect. It should only matter what you think of yourself, but that is a pitted road to perdition of its own. We are our own worst critics. Most women have a psychotic clown that lives in their brain and tells them over and over, in graphic and minute detail, every one of their failings since kindergarten. Or maybe that is just me, but I strongly suspect that it isn’t. I had hoped that the clown wouldn’t be moving in with my daughter quite so soon. I kinda thought they came with menstruation, but maybe this is a training model. Like a training bra. It is practice torture.

So after I had over thought it to death, I finally went and told her that she does not need to worry about being pretty. I reminded her how many times people compliment her eyes, or her hair, or just her. I told her that by any objective measure she is drop dead gorgeous. And then I told her that THAT is the least interesting thing about her. I reminded her that she is brilliant. That she is always at the top of her class without even trying. I reminded her that she is an amazing artist. That she is better than I was at her age, and may in fact be better than I am now. I reminded her that she plays three musical instruments, and even sings beautifully when she forgets that anyone is listening. She is funny and droll and dark and cynical and geeky and worldly and she STILL loves My Little Pony. I reminded her that she gives the best hugs in the world.

Someday someone outside of her family is going to realize all of these things. It is likely that many people will, and that many hearts will be broken. Some of those people may experience the stress of her regard. But one thing I would be willing to lay bets on…

No one is going to care about the shape of her eyebrows.