She's not called Little Meems for no reason. Yes, she's a little girl, but she's also a little girl. As in, at age 8-and-a-half barely meeting the weight requirements to even be in the booster seat, much less be out of it. At this rate, she'll be driving in her booster seat.
I've known kids who were tiny because they didn't eat anything...anything healthy anyway. She's not that kid. She loves healthy. ADORES healthy. She's the kid who orders a side salad in the Chick-Fil-A drive through. She'd rather have California Rolls than tater tots and grilled salmon than pizza. Her palate is not what you'd expect of an 8-year-old. Or of any kid, for that matter.
She's the oldest kid in her class. And the smallest. She gets picked up and carried around a lot. By me, by neighbors, by her friends. Lately, she's been mistaken more than she would like for her younger brother's twin sister. He is 5. It doesn't go over well, and I always feel badly for the well-meaning person who gleefully exclaims "twins!" He's going to outgrow her in about another month. I dread it.
The other day, we were buying some cool green skinny jeans. She's into a more grown up look these days, and is starting to have fun with her fashion. We tried on the 6. She swam in them. We tried on the 5. Also too big. Luckily, there was a size 4, but suddenly the pants she was in love with lost their lustre.
I feel her pain. I was that kid. I remember when all my friends graduated to the "miss" department and I still had to buy my shoes at Stride Rite. I feel her pain more intensely than she does, I think.
Until yesterday. I knew she felt the pain too. No amount of reassurance that one day she'd be thankful for the small size was going to ease it. She abandoned the pants and walked away. I bought them anyway, thinking maybe she'll change her mind. Thinking I can show her that she makes the pants look that much cuter because she is so little. Thinking this is my challenge as her mother...to show her how to just overcome her difference, and not let it stop her from doing anything she wants.
And so maybe I bought the pants for me too. I don't always know the right things to say, but I know how to help a little girl rock some cool green skinny jeans.
And hopefully, some self confidence as well.