E is getting older, as kids do. 4 is fast approaching, and she’s sliding into that home stretch with all the inquisitiveness you’d expect of this age. E is a noticer. You may not even notice that she’s noticed until it gets brought up later, but she does. This is wonderful and brilliant and makes for the best conversations. We took Branden’s phone last night and let her use Google Voice and ask questions. It was pure delight. We now know why the moon looks orange sometimes, among other things.
With an inquisitive noticer of a child who goes a bit against the flow, however, occasionally we hit bumps. It’s hard to believe a 3 year old would know to ask the things E asks.
“Am I normal?” Or sharing her truth and then asking, “Do you still like me?”
E has two siblings, nosy talkative things they were. Those were questions they never felt compelled to ask. Not at 5, not at 7, and absolutely not at 3.
I search my mind for where these messages come from. I jump to conclusions and settle myself back down. I realize that I have to stop looking for the source and just protect and reassure the best I can. She has the nuclear four of us who love her unconditionally and don’t bat an eye about it. I thank God for Jo and Bay and the siblings they are to E. They make it look so easy. I think to them, it maybe just really is. E will always have a safe space in these walls. The answer to her questions here is always a resounding “yes!”
If you ever do encounter my kiddo, or anyone like her, I pray that your answer can be “yes” as well. To embrace someone different than yourself does no harm. To reject can do more harm than you can imagine.
Be the “yes” to someone’s question. It may be the most important word they ever hear.