Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh MY… Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh MY…
Three Years ago Meghan was Dorothy for Halloween. The idea originated on a trip to Disney as we went through “The Great Movie Ride.” Felix and I realized she had never seen “The Wizard of Oz,” and we had a thrilling time explaining the story and later watching the movie together.
Meghan liked Dorothy because she felt like she could relate to her. She respected Dorothy’s bravery as she led the Lion, the Tin Man, and the Scarecrow to see the Wizard of Oz. She liked Dorothy’s stamina, and her determination. Dorothy never gave up. And she carried a dog. Really, what more could a girl want?
Of course for my only child, my girl, I jumped full in and spent a ridiculous sum on a fabulous Dorothy dress and some ruby slippers. Well worth it. Worth it for the memories, for her smile of excitement, and for days like today when I can remind her that she and Dorothy have an awful lot in common.
Meghan is fighting shoulder pain. Deep, knotted pain. The mean, painful kind, only pacified with full strength muscle relaxants, that you don’t wish on anyone – especially not a 10 year old. And definitely not THIS 10 year old.
One might theorize that its stress related, and one might even be tempted to tell her to relax, and let a few things go. One might be tempted to admonish her for making herself so tense. Really, at 10 – what should she be worried about?
Then if that very same person, who hopefully thought before they spoke, really contemplated the life of this kid – they might understand. They might even grab a pen and help her write her homework, or make some time to rub that shoulder.
And, while they rubbed, and listened to the throat clearing which must just be flat-out annoying to HER, they would really be in awe that she holds it together as well as she does.
She is a kid. A kid with a growing up body, and grown up worries. And a kid who still has kid worries too.
While anyone who sees her sees a cool, confident smile, and a remarkable, articulate presence, only a precious few have glimmers of the “lion” side.
Meghan strives to achieve excellence, all the time. She wants to do her best in school. Actually, she expects herself to be perfect in school. She agonizes over each step along the way. She loves the children. She enjoys the teachers. And this young lady who spends so much time feeling “abnormal,” strives every second of the day to fit in perfectly at school. She relishes the feeling of “normalcy,” even if only for a few hours each day. The problem is, anything less than perfection is unacceptable to her.
Now, if I am honest, and introspective the phrase “alligators have alligators” comes to mind. She learned a lot of this worry from me. And even though I do not have the expectations of her that she has of herself, I have those expectations of MYSELF. I want to give it all to everyone, all the time. And sometimes, I feel as though the “perfect storm” is lurking, and my inability to “let it go,” could be the inevitable cause.
But what to “let go?” Please, don’t even get me started. Maybe instead I, the lion, should focus on my faith – toss it up to God, and lead by example.
Easier said than done of course.
So I, the Cowardly Lion watch, as my brave Dorothy leads down our “Yellow Brick Road.”
Sometimes we have to duck out of the way, as obstacles fly in our faces, but we press on. And I watch as my brave girl starts to work on a Rare Disease Day Movie Night fundraiser. I watch as she puts others first. I follow her lead, glad to be her back up.
I watch as she gathers information. I listen as she asks her aunt to help her create a Power Point. I admire her focus.
She suffers. She grieves. She stresses. She panics. She hurts. But she perseveres.
Rare Disease Day – February 28, 2014.
Thyroid Surgical consultation – February 25, 2014.
Making a difference every day.
She was made to be “Courageous”
We are “beatingcowdens!”