This weekend I had the glorious opportunity to sit my bum in a salon chair and read to my heart’s content. And when I got home, Sprout ooo-ed and aaahh-ed over my pink sparkly toes. Princess toes, he said.
Naturally, being 4 years old and only at the initial cusp of understanding the enormous burdens our society places on the genders, he asked if he could have painted toes too. I said yes and let him select his colors. He now has sandal-ready green and blue toesies. Proud as punch and showing them off to everyone he encounters – he’s grown up. pretty much 5. with painted toes, just like mommy.
Two (bratty) 10-year-old girls at the playground didn’t think it was quite as cool as he did.
“Why are your toes painted? Are you trying to be a girl? Ewww!”
[thank goodness I was trailing a wild toddler or my inner mama bear would have jumped the railing and clawed her face. okay, not really. but almost.]
“I’m a boy but my mommy said I could still have pretty toes.”
“That’s your opinion.”
And just like that he turned those painted toes in the opposite direction and marched away, head held high, and found himself a new playmate.
Tears of pride and sadness came to eyes. When did he get so big? And brave? And confident? My goodness, I’m such a fan of that kid.
You take my breath away Sprout. I just couldn’t love you any more.