Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Stardom Week - Part 2

This is Part Two of a Nine part series

Swami Chinmayanad once said "Disappointment occurs to those who make an appointment with the future". I have often remembered this quote when the future I had wanted shaped up a lot contrary to my desire or dreams. Had J been any older or wiser, I might have said that to her when I called home Monday afternoon after she had returned from school to check how things went with the poster. "Mommy, I started very late and then the bell for the school bus rang. Mrs. H showed it to the class herself. She said I can have my turn tomorrow". J said sadly.

I could sense deep hurt and disappointment in her voice. I tried to tell her that it was no big deal and she could talk about it on Tuesday. J insisted that all the other kids who had their turn to be the star always started to present their poster right after naptime but she was not allowed to do so until much later. I was surprised that she could even discern the difference in timing. "They start around 1:00 but Mrs. H let me start after 2:00". I did not want to jump to rash conclusions about the teacher's intent and motivation for doing what she had done. I was willing to believe that J had high hopes and was feeling let down at the way things had not gone the way she might have wanted.

She was upset that Mrs. H stole her thunder. I came home a little earlier than usual and tried to distract her from the poster incident. In a few hours she was back to being her usual cheerful self trying to decide between Horsey and Teddy to take to class the next day. Tuesday was the day for the star of the week to share their favorite toy. Horsey won in the end. I know J has a personality for the outside world. Neither Horsey nor Teddy are her favorites - but they conform to the popular stereotype of a "favorite stuffed animal".

I asked her why she did not want to share "Junie" her old and rather uncool doll and the "true" favorite toy. She said "My friends will not understand". I realized as long as I was able to give her what it took to remain in her true and natural self at home and with me, we would both be fine but it would take constant effort to make sure she did not feel any need to invent a persona for my benefit.

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