I snapped this picture the other day to preserve the contents of my daughter’s purse for posterity. I’ll probably put it into her baby book.
It always strikes me the difference between my firstborn (a boy), and my girl. They’re completely different; it’s been pink from the start for my daughter, whereas my son was immediately drawn to trains and tractors. Back in my college days fresh from sociology class, I would have superiorly noted that there are no differences between the sexes (other than the obvious biological ones.) Children, I’d say, will play with what their parents give them. Boys will play with dolls if you provide them, and girls trucks, and vice versa. In the nature/nurture debate, I tended toward the nurture side.
This was back before I had children of my own–you know, back when I knew everything about parenting. God has a wicked sense of humor that way.
Let’s run through the items. Note the glittery, pink of the purse; she is truly a girl in this sense, and you’ll find her affinity for the color extends to the items that she feels it necessary to include with her at all times. Several bracelets may be found, a pink matchbox car, glittery nail polish, a small doll, two fetuses, a couple superballs—what? Did I just say two fetuses? Yes, there they are, and I’ll say that they’re probably her most prized possessions.
Why on earth, you’re asking, are there two fetus models in your daughter’s purse? About a year ago, we were on a trip with my parents, and the kids were getting restless in the car. Grandma, who counsels at a crisis pregnancy center, had them in her purse, and gave them to the kids to distract and occupy themselves with until we reached our destination. My daughter “adopted” them into her heart and life, and has treasured them ever since.
To her, though, they’re not fetuses (she’s two). They are, and were from the start, babies. I’ve found it useful to take note of the innocence and absolute forthrightness diplayed by small children. They tell it like it is; they hold nothing back, and are incapable of nuance. They’ll tell you (or anyone) that you have a funny nose, or ask strangers the relevant (and often embarrassing) questions. But most of the time, they single out the pertinent thing, and proceed to nail it. There’s nothing else in the world that those two items could be to my daughter other than babies.
I guess for my two year old, the question of when life begins isn’t above her paygrade.