Tuesdays are my Gracie Days. I work from home, and she doesn’t have preschool, so we usually get to spend some special time together in the morning. This week was no exception….it was special.
Gracie was in an extra bossy mood on this particular morning. She insisted on loading-up a toy wagon with a bunch of junk and bringing it in the car while we took a ride to drop-off big sis at preschool. This translated into adding an extra 5 to 10 minutes to our already delayed departure time. Fine. Next, she was adamant about bringing her little green floss pick into the school. Apparently, dental hygiene was a priority for Miss Grace on this lovely morning. However, she couldn’t find the green flosser, and there was no convincing her that we’d look for it later. There was a fit. There was some shouting. I finally dug the little green flosser out of a deep crevice in her car seat – yes she put it back in her mouth, and yes, it made me gag. Add on another 5 minutes. Fine.
The shenanigans continued, but somehow we made it back home. Standing in the kitchen Gracie began scolding me again:
“I no yike my shirt. It a boy shirt”
She was wearing a light blue t-shirt that had ruffle-y shoulders and a sequin heart. Apparently in her mind, the color of the shirt trumped all of the girly accoutrements.
“Boys and girls can wear whatever they want,” I told her.
“NO! I A BOY! AND I WANT TO BE A GIRL!!! I go change.”
Oh, she’s not just wearing a “boy’s shirt,” now she is a boy. This was getting serious….I sort of felt bad that she was so upset (and she was upset), thinking she was a boy and wanting to be a girl.
As you may already know my gender radar is on high alert, and anything having to do with gender learning…I just latch right onto it! So there I stood in the kitchen thinking this was such a great example of gender consistency and how kids don’t quite understand that their gender doesn’t change by simply wearing something that appears to be for the other-gender. I even thought to myself that this was about right….Gracie’s not quite three-years-old yet. It’s around age three that kids develop this understanding that gender stays the same – that if you’re a boy, putting on dress won’t make you a girl, you’re still a boy….just in a dress.
I pointed out that this dress was blue too. She smirked, and in her little sing-song voice replied, “And white…”
Hmmm….does somebody have my number? I think my almost 3-year-old may be playing me like a fiddle.