The other night, one of the moms on our baseball team brought a few hula hoops to practice. Another mom was preparing for a birthday party - a carnival theme with classic carnival games - and she wanted to have several hula hoops there, so it was one mom helping another out. You know the drill. Anywho - Madalyn had never even seen a hula hoop. And being the mule she is, she was bound and determined to teach herself how. The other two girls there are a full year and a few months older than her and also just taller and bigger. In other words, I didn't think my long and lanky four-year-old had a chance of learning.
She began her attempt with a rather unconventional method - some sort of hiking up of the leg while thrusting it around her hip with her arm. All the moms got a kick out of watching her try, even to the point of tears. But as we continued to watch her continue to try, she got better. And better. And better. And within an hour and a half, she was out hula-hooping the other two girls by a long shot. This little bitty ball of fire had taught herself to hula hoop right in front of my eyes.
Of course, we had to stop at Walmart on the way home and buy two of them for our house. How could I deny her the pleasure of showing her daddy what she had learned?
And what did I learn from watching her? No matter what that little girl may go through in life, she'll be okay. She has a belief in herself that I don't think I ever had. She didn't cower down to a stinking hula hoop as big around as she is tall. She just kept going, and she never stopped. And that's just her - she never stops. No matter what the obstacle is in front of her, she'll find a way to move it. She may move it herself, or she may scream and kick and punch until someone moves it for her. But, none the less, she'll get it moved. One way or the other. I think I just might like that about her after all. Even though it causes some long days around here, it just might work to her advantage down the road. Maybe it will keep her from making some of the bad decisions her mama has made along the way. Or maybe she'll make twice as many as I did just to spite me. But something tells me she'll be something mighty one day.