The ‘gratitude’ category

Say Yeth

July 15th, 2022

My daughter answers “yeth” and my heart softens. She’s been aggravating me by fighting with her sister about things of no consequence, things I think are stupid like who gets to pick the first fork or whose favorite color is purple. I am grave with irritation much of the time, my temper short. But she says “yeth” and I stop in my tracks. 

She is seven and cannot yet distinguish the difference between a hard S and a digraph Sh. She has a huge vocabulary but not the pronunciation quite yet. She says “yeth” and I remember that she can’t possibly be expected to exhibit emotional intelligence of any order when I certainly barely can, and I am 50. I am 50 and have perfect pronunciation if I do say so myself — and still can’t keep my emotions in check half the time.

When she gives me her soft affirmative I see her as if for the first time, every time. She is not an untamed raccoon in human form, as I often jokingly say to my friends. She and her sister are not purposely trying to unravel me by shouting “MAMA!!” every single time I try to steal off and pee, just once, in peace. She is not a tiny little despot with endless snack demands and ridiculous, unreasonable opinions on underpants. Or, rather, she is all these things, and she is also my daughter, learning how to say yes.



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