I was not a girly girl growing up. I was 4 years old when my only sister got married and moved away to start her own life. I was left with ALL boys. I didn't have a shot at being a girly girl. I learned early that if I was going to have someone to play with I would have to learn how to take a punch, take a joke and take a hike when necessary. So on the playground that was our backyard I tried to throw, catch, hit and run just as good if not better than they all could. It was my way of survival as much as it was my assurance that I would be included in their world. And make no mistake, I wanted to be part of their world. It was the only one I really had much exposure to. My mother, who had prayed diligently for another girl tried very hard to expose me to pink, dresses, dolls and other girly things. But bless her heart, she didn't stand a fighting chance with the 8 testosterone filled siblings I was left to play with. The day we lost our baseball in the backyard and I pulled my dolls head off to use in its place, I think a little something died inside of her. But she never gave up and she NEVER made me feel as though I was being the wrong version of myself.
So today when I painted a version of pink that no human should have to put on a wall I thought of my mother. You see, 4 years ago I think I gave birth to the daughter that my mother had always wanted. A frilly, tu-tu loving, fabulously feminine girl who can't get enough of dolls, princess' and things that sparkle. She actually broke down in tears one time when I told her that I didn't like pink. I don't encourage the girly thing, I don't know how to encourage the girly thing. It's just there. So taking a lesson from my mom I will simply love her. Her. Not the version of her that I think she should be or that I'd rather she be for my own comfort, but her. Not because I understand her or agree with her but because my job is to love her. The fabulously unique, wonderful individual that she is right now and will continue to become. And right now she wants to be surrounded in, draped in and consumed by all things pink and purple and glittery. And so….I'll paint. Painting is my version of when my mom cheered for the homerun I hit with the doll head. On the inside she was undoubtedly shaking her head but on the outside NOTHING but love! And love is what makes all the difference in life isn't it? So today, in our house, the color of love is pink….with flowers…..and a little purple….
And just to let her know I REALLY love her I put down my artistic expectations and gave in when she wanted to paint flowers too!
I do love her. She won't know how much until she has to sit and cheer on her daughter at the lumber jack contest or the pig call national finals!