This morning Tessa came out and asked me a very simple question.
"Mommy, is I a little bit big?"
Her voice was loaded. This was not a question about stature, and the last thing she wanted was accuracy. There was almost a worried sound in her sweet little voice.
"Yes," I smiled, thinking I might know what she was getting at. "You are a little bit big." I waited for her explanation, or perhaps her proposition. Surely she had a plan for which being "big" was a crucial factor.
"Thank you!" She said it earnestly, and with relief. I was surprised. She didn't have an agenda, she needed a compliment.
When I was a kid there was a song on the radio that proclaimed "Short people got no reason." I remember being small, and making myself little promises. I told myself, "When I am big I will not say "never mind" to children." I told myself I would pick children up so they could see over the counter at the hardware store. That I would listen to children when they gave epic accounts of favorite cartoons. I promised my childhood self that I would never make children feel small.
When I was a teenager my mother once asked the deadly question, "Do I look fat in this?" In my idiotic 15 year old brain, I saw an opportunity to give my mother an obvious lesson in perseverance. I replied, "You know, Mom, you could loose weight if you really wanted to." Now that I am older, along with a little more grey matter and a few extra kilos, I know what she was asking. She felt badly about herself, and she wanted to know if she was worth loving.
This morning I think that Tessa was asking me very plainly; Am I important? Do I matter? Am I OK? Do you love me?
"Is I a little bit big?"
To me, she is HUGE.
Photo by Cute Annmarie Hall who takes the best pictures ever.