God help us, Violet has planned her entire future already.
- She’ll marry a man named John. He will “be a great husband. He will love God and treat his wife respectfully; like a princess”.
- She’ll have two kids: A daughter named Noosha (who’ll grow her “in her belly”) and a son named Coco (who’ll be adopted). For now she practices with her baby dolls.
- She will live in Arizona. But personally, I think she is saying that because it’s still cool outside. Ask her in August and I’m pretty sure she’ll say Colorado.
- She will take all of my shoes (because now that she’s the mommy, she gets the mommy shoes). She will also take my bed. And on the occasion that her husband is sick, she’ll take mine.
- She will “take pictures, teach her kids and be a mommy”. She will also make pancakes often.
- She will go on lots of date nights with her husband and I will be allowed to take care of my grandchildren on these evenings.
- She hasn’t decided what her kids will call me yet – she oscillates between “Gramma” and something crazy like “Ya-ya”. And then she throws her head back and laughs… I think she can sense the power she’ll have over me.
- She will miss us when she has grown up. But “don’t worry,” she says. “I can always call you on the phone, and I will live behind your house, really close. You won’t even have to drive.”
She loves to discuss this. She will go into amazing detail about the life she has in mind, and is incredibly consistent with what she talks about. As we are driving around town, she often turns to our empty backseat and checks on her kiddos, or asks them to stop fighting. She loves to bug Daniel by pretending to be married to him, following him around the house and using the word “honey” as often as humanly possible. (“Honey, since you’re my husband, my honey, will you help me take our children shopping honey?” To which he normally replies something along the lines of: “I’M NOT YOUR HUSBAND!”)
Daniel isn’t alone in his resistance to Violet’s in-a-rush-to-be-married behavior. Fernando cannot handle the thought (imaginary though it is) of his daughter married with her own kids, so a few weeks ago he tricked her into pinky-promising him that she’d never get married. Ever. She fell for it and now has added a new line in her regular repertoire: “When John want to marry me, I will have to ask Daddy first and see if he’ll change his mind about the pinky promise.”
The most fascinating part of this whole thing is how absolutely real this future world is to Violet. I can often get through to her during bad behavior by asking her what she would do if Noosha was acting/speaking/etc like this – how would she help her own daughter learn? Every time, she calms down and comes up with a perfectly logical (and often brilliant) solution. And she likes to use it on me too. She tried to call me “mom” the other day, but I let her know that for now, I prefer Mommy or Mama. She smiled sweetly and agreed, but as she walked away I heard her say, “When I have kids, I will let Noosha and Coco call me Mom whenever they want to.”
She has stuck to this story line for well over a year now, long before the age of three. It’s fascinating for a lot of reasons, but it’s also sweet. It brings back my own memories of playing dress up and pretending to dabble in grown up things.
I’m glad Violet has so many play-filled years in front of her. I’m not ready for her to grown up just yet, even if she is convinced she is fully prepared.