Blink—And They're Grown

Parents, Families and Child Care

I Didn’t Evil-y Do Anything!

A howl came from my children’s bedroom and I raced to run interference.

My six-year-old sat there with her ringlets curling around her head like a halo and cool as if butter wouldn’t melt in her mouth. In contrast to her serenity, the perfect O her brother’s mouth formed as he continued to yowl told another story.

“Liv,” I said sternly, hands on both hips, “What did you do to him?”

Her innocent response? “I didn’t evil-y do anything!”

Levi roared louder. Apparently he begged to differ.

Despite my son’s obvious upset, I had to stifle a giggle as I comforted him about the toy she’d taken from him.

Of course Liv’s response wasn’t innocent, but boy was it funny – and a little ironic. What she was trying to say was, “I didn’t even do anything.” And she’d been trying to say it in her unique way, which she’s done ever since she started talking. Now, whether or not she “evil-y” intended to do anything – whether to her brother, the cat or my make-up – I was still sad when recently, at age seven, she answered my “Liv…” with, “I didn’t even do anything.” (Just to clarify, though my daughter’s behavior is sometimes mischievous, I wouldn’t classify it as evil).

That quirky phrase has now passed from being one of those endearing things she said as a little girl to a memory to be shared, not only with a future spouse, but with her, because chances are, she won’t remember it.

I’m not a scrapbooker or an avid cam recorder, but I do chronicle the special things with words. This post will go in her keepsake box of pictures and published clippings I’ve written about her. It just goes along with parent territory to want to capture as much as we can now since they won’t be around forever. Through our collections we can revisit their childhood.

This is my stepson’s last week of high school. Saturday afternoon my husband checked his email and saw that parents were supposed to decorate the seniors’ lockers that morning. Well, that window of opportunity had long closed, but Greg wasn’t about to give up without a try. “If the school’s closed, I’ll try again first thing Monday morning,” he told me. Thankfully, the school was open for another activity.

Armed with pictures that dated back to Jordan’s infancy, Greg decorated the locker top to bottom with memories he’d collected over the years. A true labor of love. Many parents must have missed the email also and Greg felt bad about other seniors not having their lockers done. He also felt bad that as the only guy, his decorating wasn’t fancy. The moms had gone wild with streamers, balloons, scrapbook pages etc.

When he got home, he said, “I did the best I could. My kid wasn’t going to have a bare locker. Not on my watch.”

Monday morning Greg received the following text from Jordan: “Thanks, Dad for my locker.” That’s one that won’t get deleted.

Guess those memories we store up mean something to parent and child.

Greg is humble, so he would say, kind of like Liv and kinda not like her, “I didn’t even do anything.”

Jordan and I would beg to differ.

– Tammi

Photo courtesy of allegr0.

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