So there's this lady that goes to my church. I pretty much think she's the best. She's this leggy, gorgeous brunette with two of the sweetest little girls ever. One is 3 or 4 (let's call her Lizzy) and one is almost 2 (we'll call her Jane). Lizzy stole my husband's heart (back when I was pregnant) when she started doing secret ballet moves in the back of church and he whispered to me: "I hope our daughter is funny like that."
And every Sunday I teach singing to both of these girls and they are just hilarious, vivacious little things and I adore them.
Earlier this summer, Lizzy fell out of a 2nd story window because her and her best friend heard a lawn mower and wanted to see more. He broke both of his arms, and she broke her neck. Both of them are okay now, but it gave all of us who know them quite the scare, and my heart went out to their moms. Little Lizzy now wears a neck brace covered in shiny stickers. When she walks in the room, neck brace or not, she has a smile on her face that says: "I am the greatest person to ever live." It is a twinkle in her eye. I just love seeing her strut around in that neck brace! It cracks me up.
Not long after the window incident, Jane fell while playing in the living room and broke her arm or wrist and now has a big, purple cast on. Her mom says she now uses it as a weapon.
I love to see this woman who I have such respect for walk into church with her two bandaged up little girls. Not because I am happy they are hurt, but just because she leads them in with no apologies. Her air says "kids get hurt. I don't care what you think about it."
I was telling Scott how much I admired this. I was telling him "I bet she gets tons of dirty looks because people aren't used to seeing two GIRLS banged up from playing. I bet if she had BOYS people would just laugh and say: "boys will be boys!" I bet she feels judged all the time!"
I think Scott just listened. I think he both agreed with me and told me we can't assume what other people are thinking. After all, we had never seen anything but sympathy and kindness offered to this family from anyone in our congregation.
But I talked to leggy, gorgeous brunette mom on Sunday and you know what? That's EXACTLY how she feels. She says I wouldn't believe the looks she gets (maybe not from people at church, but from day to day). She got real indignant about the whole situation and told me she feels like people are thinking:
"Girls? Get HURT? Of course not! No! Girls aren't curious or prone to tantrums or rambunctious enough to jump off of furniture! No! They are hurt because YOU weren't watching them! YOU weren't protecting them!"
I don't know why I'm telling this story other than the fact that I felt her fire. Perhaps it's a small plea for you to wink at those bumped and bruised kids and and give a kind smile to the mom no matter what gender her kids are. Because all kids can get hurt.
But no one can rock a neck brace like Lizzy.