|Credit: Gary M. Stolz/US Fish and Wildlife Service (Public Domain)|
Often, whenever I am communicating with my two young children I feel it is no more productive than this silly party game! I am reminded time and time again how easy it is for children to misunderstand the simplest of things. An excellent example of this profound truth happened nearly 2 years ago.
Two summers ago, my children and I were pretending we were animals. My daughter, then 3, decided it would be a wonderful idea for all of us to dress up as an animal and continue to play. We all ran off to create our own costumes.
My son (5 at the time) returned to the living room first hopping around in footed pajamas and bunny ears. He made quite an adorable bunny rabbit! I followed right behind all in black with a tail and cat ears. My son laughed as I purred and meowed. We were having quite a wonderful time!
Fifteen minutes later, we were still waiting for my daughter to return. Finally, I yelled up the stairs for her to come join the fun and she called back, “Coming, Mommy!”
About 5 minutes later, my little princess came running back into the living room. She had on a black dress. Over top of it was the pink training bra she had begged me to get her for her birthday (since she wanted to be just like Mommy). Underneath her dress, she had her black and white striped leggings. Confused, I asked her what animal she was supposed to be.
She giggled and grinned from ear to ear. “A zebra, Mommy, a zee-BRA! I have my stripes and my bra. See?”
I started laughing, thinking she had been creative and used a play on words . . . quite ingenious for a 3 year old. However, she immediately dashed that conclusion when she further explained: “Too bad my bra is pink and not stripped like a real zebra’s bra . . .!”