Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Little Ears Hear Everything

While having lunch with my little cousin yesterday, she began to instruct me on her need to "eat less junk so I can get skinny". Hannah is just 5 years old, so I was more than a bit shocked and worried to hear that she thought she was "fat". I carefully asked her why she thought she was fat. Her response "Well, Mama said if she didn't eat junk she'd lose weight. I eat junk and have chubby legs."

It took some careful wording and selective phrases, but I managed to explain to her my her Mama needed to stop eating junk, i.e. lose baby weight, and she didn't. However, it was a reminder that her little ears hear everything, and that something I say might shape her image of herself.

I have a tendency to be very self-critical. I tend to focus on my self-perceived flaws and have times vocalized this in front of Hannah. Now more than ever, I am going to shift my focus to my strengths, not my weaknesses. And hopefully, Hannah can grow up knowing that perfection isn't necessary to be a wonderful individual.