Saturday, August 13, 2011

Rachel's Birthday - Part 2

As I mentioned in an earlier blog post Rachel's birthday was August 9th and she had two birthday requests: to have her room painted and to get her ears pierced.

Well, the second of those two requests was very difficult for me.  She actually asked for the ear piercing last year and we I decided against it.  You see, letting her get her ears pierced - even at 9 years old - goes against every fiber of my being.  Here's why:

First of all, it is just not the way I was raised.  I probably wouldn't have been allowed to get my ears pierced until I was at least 12.  As it happened, I didn't actually want to get them pierced until I was 16.  Even then, it was more about finding jewelry to match my prom dress than it was about anything else.

Secondly, have you met Rachel???  This is the child who required me and two nurses to pry her from tornado drill position and hold her down on the exam table just to administer a simple flu shot.  She then left the doctor's office limping dramatically and loudly proclaiming what a terrible family she had and how much they all must hate her.  This is also the child for which it took Novocaine three times longer than normal to take effect due to the crying and wailing.  Now they just have the nitrous ready and waiting anytime we show up - no questions asked.  She also despises having her hair washed, cut, or even brushed and complains profusely anytime I catch a tangle.   I could go on, but you probably get my point by now.

Finally, and if I am being honest, it is a sign of her growing up.  It is just one step closer to more jewelry, make-up, and high heels.  She is my oldest, but she is still a baby to me.  I am not ready to let her grow up.

So why did I "give in?"  Like the room painting, I realized that this was something of great importance to Rachel and I made a deal with her a couple of months ago.  Her end of the bargain was that she had to prove her maturity by taking care of her braces (which she got in April) and fully cooperating with a routine check-up at the pediatrician's office.  We had several detailed discussions about the ear piercing process and the importance of taking care of her ears after they are pierced.  I also set some very clear limits about what kind of earrings are and are not appropriate.  Well, she kept up her end of the bargain.  She did it with flying colors, in fact.  So, I had to keep my promise as well.

I am sure there are some people who disagree with my decision and others who are asking "What's the big deal?"  I have friends and relatives on both sides of that fence.  Personally, I still have some reservations, but Rachel is thrilled.  The day we got them pierced she couldn't stop smiling and talking about it.  

The fact is, she is growing up and I can't stop it.  Hopefully, though, I can keep it from happening too terribly fast and still see that beautiful Rachel smile many more times along the way!  


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