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February 9, 2012

Tender Heart

It’s happened twice this week.

The first time, we sat cuddled on the couch in the girls’ room after nap, reading a story about Lilypet.

Lilypet is a pristine white field mouse who disobeys her mommy and wanders away from their house in search of adventure. She tries to make friends with some animals on a farm, but they are scared of her. She runs away from the farm, only to come face to face with a tom cat. She narrowly escapes the cat, only to then realize she’s lost.

At that point in the story, I glanced at Baby A, and her little chin was trembling, tears welled in her eyes.

It’s OK!” I told her, turning the page. “Look! See, Lilypet finds her way home, and here she is with her mommy, safe and warm.”

Despite the picture of the happy ending, Baby A was quite upset, crying. She climbed into my lap and burrowed her face against my shoulder. We had to put the book away and move on to something else.

A day or so later, the girls asked to read from the book of fairy tales they got for Christmas. Judging solely by the pictures they insisted on reading “the one with the ducks”, The Ugly Duckling.

Given what had happened with the Lilypet story, I was trying to temper my usually-impassioned style of reading, and hurry through the sadder parts. But my efforts were to no avail. We made it to the part of the story where the ducks are teasing the baby swan, and Baby A lost it again.

Of course I don’t like to see her upset – and I’ll try to be more discerning about what stories we read for a while – but oh, how I just want to wrap her tender little heart in the softest blanket and cuddle my baby girl forever.

12 comments:

Cuz I'm the mama! said...

What a sweet story. Your little A is quite tender hearted. That will be a memory you will tuck in your heart forever. Thanks for sharing.

Tracie said...

Oh how sweet, my oldest is like that. Took her to see Ramona and Beezus and the part she remembers most is crying when the cat died.

strongblonde said...

oh! this is so sweet. if you figure out how to protect her, please let me know. little T has started to show signs that he is very sensitive and gets concerned like this, too.

what a great post. makes me want to hug her!! :)

Mandy said...

That is too precious! I don't think I've experienced this at all yet which is a good thing because I'd probably laugh! I'm so mean!

Julia said...

Oh! Sweet Baby A! When I saw the title of this post, I thought perhaps you were going to talk about the Care Bears---ha! :)

Brynne is very much the same way. She gets upset if a character is sad. And she gets scared very easily. I've had to put away several books, because they really bother her. Also---I haven't even given them a lot of books that we have that talk about being scared of monsters, etc. Why introduce something that isn't there??

Brad Jenkins said...

Julia stole my comment.

Johanna said...

I love her! What an empathetic little girl - something that is hard to teach if it doesn't come naturally. She's going to be a wonderful friend!

Marcia (123 blog) said...

She is so precious! But yes, I think watch the stories for awhile.

I was saying to D a lot of the stories we used to read are actually quite gruesome - there's one where they cut the wolf's stomach open and Three Blind Mice - cut off their tails with a carving knife.

EEK!

or am I reading too much into it?

Barbara Manatee said...

ohhhh!! Just wrap her and that sweet heart up!!! So sweet and empathetic!!

Amanda said...

Oh that is so sweet. What a sensitive and compassionate little girl...

cat said...

Sweet sweet child.

Rebecca @ Unexplained X2 said...

I love this...absolutely love it.

I don't think you should skip sad things anymore though. Emotion is part of life and it's amazing (for her developmental age) that she's experiencing empathy and sympathy. I'd go with it and discuss it at length. It's also good for her to see that sad can become happy and that we (or the characters) have control over that. I think it's awesome...don't shy away b/c those big tears and trembly lips make you sad! LOL