Monday, January 02, 2012

Talking 'Bout a Revolution

Last night my daughters learned about New Year's resolutions. They got very excited about the whole concept--which was really refreshing, honestly, because what adult do you know gets truly enthused about the idea of, say, eating more vegetables or exercising every day?--and decided to make some of their own.

Genevieve kept calling them "revolutions." And, since hers involved things like not yelling at her sister so much, I guess that mispronunciation was actually quite appropriate. It would be a revolution, in this house, if someone could get the girls to stop screaming at each other over such important things as who is hogging the stepstool and who won't stop talking in her bed at night when the other is tired and wants to go to sleep.

I have to say, Genevieve's little list and her little voice talking about her list with such earnest sincerity and effort were a bit heartbreaking. She's such a tough little nut to crack, so quiet and compliant in public and so downright mean at home sometimes--the hitter, the pusher, the screamer-in-your-face, and apology-refuser. Whereas Julia is always thinking about how others feel, Genevieve's reflex is to knock you down and not care a bit.

But then here was Vivi, making her "revolutions:" My first one is to be nicer! Like, not be so mean to everyone, and if I push someone, not just run away, but say, 'I'm sorry!' And then she added others, about compromising more and not screaming at the top of her lungs when she's mad. When she scrambled up on my bed to show me her list and read them aloud, she was so genuinely excited and proud. It made me realize that she really does care, when she's mean and nasty to the rest of us. She really does want to be "nicer." Poor little sweets. She wishes her first reaction wasn't to scream at people and hit them, too.

And then there was the resolution to be a better role model. I'm not sure where this one came from, but her example was that, for instance, if she was at school and children were arguing over the toy area, she would suggest that they take turns or compromise. But the best part was how she thought role model was "rule model." She wants to be a good "rule model" in 2012. You know: suggest sharing toys in the play area at school and all that.

A rule model! Of course.

May we all be good rule models in the new year.

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