Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Nail Painting - Bonding With Daughters

“You can tell a lot from a person's nails. When a life starts to unravel,
they're among the first to go.” - Ian McEwan, Saturday

   I'm an artist. Whether by innate character, or the degree I hold (now that I'm in medical sales,...cough-cough!), I'm always an artist first and foremost. When my firstborn turned out to be a girl, I knew I'd be up for nail painting. I've gotten halfway decent at it, and thought I was on my way. Then I stumbled across PolishArtAddition and immediately felt inadequate. I figure as long as I keep trying, my 'Lil Miss won't fault me for making some time to be together.

   A few years back I called my father to check in and say hello. I asked what he was up to and he replied that he had just given my little half-sister a bath, and was brushing her hair. I let an appropriate silence go by before saying softly, "You never brushed MY hair, dad." He protested that "he didn't know what to do with little boys before I could tell him I was just giving him a hard time. It stuck with me though, that he didn't try as hard as he could have. Maybe he didn't try has hard as he THOUGHT he could have.

   Now, I'm not going to make bumper stickers that say "Real Men Paint Nails!", but you get the point. Whether we cook with our little girls, or hammer nails with our little boys. In our house we've not only done that, but I've painted my son's nails and played Jedi with my daughter. It's all in the effort and creating the experiences. I challenge us all to do more, to be more involved, and to get outside our comfort zone when it comes to our children. I wish my father was more affectionate with us four boys. 'Nuff said. What's YOUR favorite thing to do with your kids?


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