Tough Nug

My daughter doesn’t need or want your help. She doesn’t want her hand held or her butt wiped. She wants to feed herself, climb stairs by herself, get on and off the couch unassisted, and she surely doesn’t want your 4 yr old telling her what to do – least of all in The Gap.

This weekend we found ourselves in a BabyGap in Chelsea selecting some fall duds for the toughest nug in town. V became captivated by a rubber bouncy ball wedged between a pint-size mannequin’s motorcycle boots and was reaching her arms up to dislodge it when a preschool pipsqueak bossied her way over to protect the merchandise.

“That’s SUPPOSED to be there. It’s part of the display!,” she announced as I handed the ball to Virginia. Virginia, it could be said, didn’t give a fug. It went on and on, V would toss the ball, it would roll under a display of boys’ jeans. The older girl would retrieve it, place it back where it “belonged” and whine that, “You’re not supposed to PLAY with it! It’s part of the display!” V would get upset and beg for the ball again. I would have to listen to the bossy tot, wait until her back was turned and hand the ball to Virginia again. Once in possession of the ball, the tot got all up in V’s face, pulling the ball from her hands as she once more explained the importance of maintaining the visual merchandising standards of BabyGap. “She can’t play with that!” And I replied, “Yes. She can.”

V held the ball tight, started loudly defending herself and followed the little girl as she (finally) buzzed off and went over to her mom by the cashier. When the girl turned away from her, V tapped her on the back and continued to yell in her language. In my mind it was a “Don’t you walk away when I’m talking to you!” situation. She is SO not afraid to defend herself and get up in kid’s faces. It was awesome.

And lest you think she is a budding bully, she then spotted a tiny baby trying on some winter coats on her mom’s lap and went over to sit quietly on the floor beside them and observe the fashion show, letting the wee baby touch her ears and hair. Then she waved bye-bye to her and off we went.

I have the best baby!

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