Today, my daughter came home from preschool in a huff.
She was so angry.
“SHE THREW AWAY MY RED STICKER!”
Apparently, my daughter’s teacher had given her a sticker for doing something good. Another girl in class (claiming she believed it was a piece of trash) took it off my daughter’s shirt and threw it in the trash can.
Naturally, Naomi’s teacher tried to fix this problem by simply giving Naomi a new sticker.
On the contrary, Hell hath no fury like a five-year-old deprived of her sticker.
Naomi marched home, informed me about how angry she was at the other girl.
I had mercifully had breakfast, a morning of almost total silence, and I just finished reading Glennon Doyle’s book Love Warrior – so I’m basically a zen master today.
Me: “It sounds like your really angry.”
Naomi: “I’m so angry! She threw away my sticker!”
Me: “Your special sticker that your teacher gave you!”
Naomi: “Yes! And she threw it away. She was not being a good girl.”
Me: “Sometimes it’s hard to act like a good girl.”
Naomi: “Well, I’m a good girl at school every day.”
Me: “It’s hard when something is easy for us, but hard for someone else.”
Naomi: “I don’t have to put up with that kind of behavior.”
Me: “What do you think you should do?”
Naomi: “I’m going to take away her sticker.”
Me: “It would make you feel better to take away something from her.”
Naomi: “Yes! Can I have a piece of paper?”
Naomi went into her room, and spent a long time drawing pictures of herself, her sticker, the girl at school, the girl at school throwing her sticker away, Naomi throwing the other girls sticker away.
I’ll be honest, I was beginning to worry about her soul and where I had gone wrong.
Then, she asked for more paper and found a copy of her Moana book and went back to her drawing.
A few minutes later, I came into her room: “What are you working on?”
Naomi: “I making a Moana book for my friend, so she has one, too.”
Yes, the “friend” is the girl from her class. The sticker thief. The bad girl. The girl who she’s spent the last hour imagining stealing stickers from. The friend who was a “bad girl.” The friend who we had no mercy for a few minutes ago. Now, we are making this friend a picture book?
Me: “That’s great, Naomi. I bet she’ll really like it.”