After loads of effort, I’ve persuaded my daughter to take showers. The caveat is that these showers must occur in my bathroom, where apparently the drain is magical and non-threatening, and in tandem with my own showers. I’m happy and excited that we’ve found a better solution than bathing in the wading pool in the backyard. This new normal is still not quite ideal.
I don’t like being naked in front of people. My children haven’t counted as “people” up until now. Stella has started noticing things. Now that I’m her shower buddy, she’s really up close and personal. She likes to comment on my tattoos, count my polka-dots (moles), and make other observations about my anatomy.
I know all this is perfectly normal. But I’m seriously uncomfortable with a lot of it. Some of the comments – while innocent – also don’t make me feel so hot. I’m trying to remain very calm and serene when talking to her about this stuff, but I also don’t know quite how to respond to some of her comments. For instance (and I apologize to those of y’all on my Facebook page, since you’ve seen at least one of these):
- Stella starts poking at me, usually at my chest.
o Me: Stella, boobies are private. So are girl bits, boy bits, and butts.
o Stella: Mommy, you have long boobies. I have short boobies.
o Me (mentally): Thanks a lot, kid. You’re partially responsible for how long my boobies have become.
- While soaping up in the shower:
o Stella: Mommy, you have hair on your butt (poking at my pubes). I don’t have hair on my butt.
o Me (out loud): Stella, girl bits are private. One day you’ll have hair on your butt, too.
o Me (mentally): OMFG I’m not ready for a discussion of secondary sexual characteristics. She’s NOT EVEN 4 YET!!!
- While drying off, Stella looks at me then at herself:
o Stella: You are a girl. I’m a girl. Felix is a boy. Daddy is a boy. We have bits.
o Me: Yes, Stella. We have girl bits. Daddy and Felix have boy bits. But bits are private, remember?
o Stella: Eyes are private.
o Me: Silence (Note: During our recent immersion into the world of Mater’s Tall Tales, there is a segment about Mater being a Private Eye. I’m still at a loss as to how A) she made that connection and B) how to respond to this one. It’s purely logical but totally not.)