Pride and Heartbreak
Zoe got an Easter card in the mail from Grammy (before Easter). It was a card she was excited about... a big pretty tri-fold card where the entire inside was made to color. It had nice bold outlines. The picture was of 5 big Easter eggs sitting in the grass in a row. The eggs were in 5 different patterns. A striped one, a swirly one, a checkered one, a flowered one, and one plain. There were a couple of bees and a big sunshiny sky. It was a great coloring picture.
The card got put up our shelf to be displayed with the other cards we received (the shelf where we always put birthday cards and anniversary cards and whatever cards). Yesterday I took the cards down and asked Zoe if she wanted to color the inside of her card. She had forgotten all about it... but was excited to rush and get her colors out.
Zoe decided to color with markers instead of crayons. Nice bright cheerful markers. She sat at the dining room table (rather than her small "tiny table" in the TV room). She made a big deal about it. I sat at the computer while she colored. She finished 1 egg and called me to come look at it. After I'd given it the appropriate amount of oohing and aahing she told me to go away and she would call me to see the next egg. I went back to the computer... she colored. She showed me another brightly colored egg. All reds and yellows and blues. I praised... she sent me away.
Slowly through the afternoon she colored the eggs. She took a snack break. She watched some TV. She colored. 4 beautifully colored eggs were showed off one at a time.
At about 5pm the UPS man came to the door. I was in the kitchen. Zoe ran to the door with Nick to see what the packages were... and if anything was for her. She and Nick looked at the labels. Nick told her it looked like the new pillows I'd ordered had arrived. She wondered aloud why the boxes weren't for her.
I came out from the kitchen to take a look at our fancy new pillows.
I found Ana perched in a chair at the dining room table. A black marker in her chubby little hand. She was coloring in her 21 month old toddler scribble. The blackest crayola marker scribble you could imagine. The blackest scribble on the 5th and last uncolored egg on Zoe's card. I said "Ana! Oh no!" I think she looked at me and said "I color!" with a big proud smile. I looked at Nick as he walked over and I told him that the world was just about to implode in our dining room. It was going to be ugly... and there wasn't anything we could do about it.
Zoe left the packages in the living room to see what we were doing... and she saw Ana... and she saw the black marker... and she saw the big black scribble on her 5th egg. I can not quite explain the anger. It was ugly. It was red faced and involved screaming and crying and snot. It involved the quick crumpling and trashing of 5 lovingly colored eggs (4 by Zoe... and 1 by Ana).
Zoe did a lot of crying and screaming and kicking and stomping. Screaming that involved telling Ana how mad she was and "bad Ana VERY BAD ANA!" Ana also did a lot of crying that I can only imagine involved some confusion. Ana asked Zoe a few times "Happen Zoe? Happen?" which got more screaming. We gave Ana hugs. We gave Zoe hugs once she stopped refusing them. Ana said "Sorry Zoe. Sorry Zoe." in the sweetest way. She wasn't quite forgiven.
Zoe eventually calmed down. She eventually agreed to do some "work" in her special preschool workbook. We oohed and aahed more than was probably necessary over her matching letter sounds and circling which group had more and counting butterflies. Ana watched Zoe... and Zoe made sure Ana knew the book was her book. We took out Ana's crayons and she colored on the easel. 2 girls happily worked. Dinner was eaten. The evening went on.
Oh the drama. The heartache over 5 colored eggs.
I so wish I had pulled that card back out of the trash before the garbage went to the curb last night. I'm wishing I could look at it closely just one time at least.