Monday, June 21, 2010
Keep the Little Girls Little
I took my three oldest children to a local Vacation Bible School this morning. It turned out to be a very large and crazy-chaotic event (wall-to-wall kids and adults! loud! and they lost my registration too!) As I was getting my older two settled in their seating section of 5th and 6th graders, I looked around to find the adult or teen in charge of their group.
Two girls in VBS T-shirts were standing at the end of one of the rows...I gently interrupted their conversation and asked, "Are you two in charge of this 5th and 6th grade group?" They looked at me rather confused, and with a giggle, one said, "No, WE ARE in this group!" I said, "Oh wow! I thought you all were 16!"
And I wasn't kidding!
These girls were as tall as I am and had hair, make-up and mannerisms of teenagers! I looked over at my little daughter Katie and marveled that she looked so young. And I felt very relieved.
This is one of the reasons that we decided to bring Katie back home this past school year. We loved the teachers at her school. We loved the adminstration. Katie was learning a lot and excelling. The biggest problem that I had was that I didn't like that the little 8 year old girls acted like they were 11-13 years old! The disrespect towards adults...the talking about boys...the obsession with clothing and brands...
What happened to things like tea parties?? Those type of events now seem to be viewed as "babyish" and for the 4 year old crowd. Dolls are for kindergarteners, make-believe is silly, and playing dress-up is foolish. This kind of thinking just breaks my heart. I felt strongly that I wanted to bring Katie home simply to enjoy being a "little girl" again. Really "getting her back" though hasn't happened overnight. It's taken a long time for her to relax again and be comfortable really playing.
Seeing her enjoy American Girl dolls, playing restaurant/grocery store, and reading wholesome stories warms my heart. It is refreshing to see her live a life that is age-appropriate and not a striving to be something that her body, soul and spirit are not ready for...a false sense of maturity.
Let's keep the little girls little. May we have the wisdom and grace to guard these precious years...they are special and fleeting and the teen years will be upon us before we know it and then it will be time to deal with such things. But not now....now is the time for tea!