Isabella Grace-ious

Isabella Grace
The story of the girl who changes my life

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Crazy 8

I had an interesting experience at the mall yesterday. Nik was walking around the mall's wide corridor with Noah, (who refused to sit in his stroller and instead demanded to walk like some big wig teenager pushing people out of his way and paying no attention to whether anyone followed him or not), while Isabella and I wandered around the Crazy 8 store in search of jeans for Noah on the clearance rack. Isabella was sitting in the stroller touching racks of clothes as she passed through them and intermittently asking for a cookie, a mall ritual that we started a while back. While I scanned the circle rack, I noticed another mom doing the same nearby with a daughter about Bella's age in tow. My attention immediately went to the little girl first, and my heart did the little skip-a-beat-to-my-stomach-and-turn-to-a-knot as it usually does when I watch another child Isabella's age do things that I so want my own girl to do. She galloped (literally galloped) around the rack, talking a mile a minute in sentences that seemed far advanced for a child that age, but who am I to say when I don't even know how a normal 4 year old really talks. Isabella noticed her too, and her eyes lit up and she started saying "hi friend, hi friend!!" repeatedly, waiting eagerly for a response out of the other girl, who looked at Bells briefly and then looked away, only to look at her again with a dirty look. My attention then went to the mom, who continued her search on the circular rack, the same sweater dress in her hand that I myself held for my daughter. I couldn't help but think how odd it was that two girls would be wearing the same dress, in most likely the same size...looking so similar but acting so different. I started to feel a little sad, so I looked away, back to the girls, who were now an arms length away from each other. I watched as Isabella reached out and grabbed the other girls hand and smiled at her. The other girl looked down at the floor but didn't let go yet, just let Isabella hold her hand for a few seconds until she broke free and ran closer to her mommy. I started to walk away when I overheard the other girl say to her mommy in a nasty tattle-tell way "MOMMY! That little girl just told me that if I didn't give her my bracelet she was going to break it!" I looked back and saw the girl pointing straight at Isabella, who was now drinking her juice and oblivious of what was going on. The mom replied with a distracted "what bracelet hunny?" and the girl said "THIS bracelet (holding up her arm to her mom) The one I got for my birthday!" The mom looked down at her and then over to us and said to the girl "well that was a mean thing for her to say to you. Don't give it to her."
To say I was shocked was an understatement. I was crushed. I could NOT believe that a child that young could be so manipulative and vindictive, and I had no idea that they even held the ability to lie like that. And for what? What reason would a 4 year old have to lie? She was in no danger of getting in trouble. And honestly, where did that story even come from? It scared me to think that this child's thought process could even go in that direction, that just because she was a little uncomfortable with another child's touch or show of affection that she felt threatened enough or insecure enough to tell a horrible lie.
For a minute I just stood there, thinking about going right over to that little girl and calling her a liar, a brat, a horrible little shit. And then I thought about going over to the mom and defending Isabella, telling the mom that she will NEVER meet a sweeter little girl, will never meet another child who only wanted to love everyone, who only cried when other kids wouldn't hug her when she wanted one, or who, if asked, would give another child whatever they wanted. I wanted to tell her that if it were MY child that were wearing the bracelet in question, and the other little girl wanted it, she would have given it to her in total excitement, THAT is the kind of child my daughter is. And then I wanted to say to her that even IF my daughter would say something like the lie that her daughter told, she could never say it in a way that she nor her daughter would understand. She has speech delays lady, I would say. Prove that she said that, go ahead. Ask her to repeat it. Chances are you wouldn't understand a word of what comes out of her mouth. I would say you might consider yourself lucky after meeting my kid that you have a daughter who can gallop and carry on a conversation with you and can speak so clearly I can hear her lie across the store, but I pity you. I'm the lucky one because my daughter just wants to make people happy, even if she can't skip or tell a lie clearly.
But I didn't say that. Instead I turned around and walked away, listening to my daughter singing "happy birthday" in the front of the stroller. It dawned on me that she must have heard the girl call it her birthday bracelet and here she was, singing "happy birthday" to this girl who would have gotten total pleasure out of seeing her get in trouble. Singing happy birthday in the most beautiful, high pitched yet still soft voice, the words, while still a little jumbled and not pronounced just right, were becoming more and more clear with each verse.
I felt so proud right then. So proud that I have such an amazing little soul in my life who knows more about love and acceptance than I can ever hope to know. As we walked out of the store she turned around to look at me and said "NOW i can have a cookie mommy?" and I said, "yup love, now it's time for you to get a cookie"... i bought her three ;)


  1. i'd buy her three, too, mikaela. gorgeously written. we are so blessed by bella.

  2. Sounds like Adrian so much - your sweet Bella. reading that I envision our little ones going to school with "mean" kids. I have a friend that pulled her child out of 1st grade do to bullies, yes, first grade - how sad!! our babes are so innocent (that's special about them!) maybe they won't ever learn those negative qualities like how to lie or be deceiving -I feel like that's a good thing, we are so blessed! ;)