it's never a good sign when you walk into your child's preschool and the teacher looks up, sees you, and starts laughing out loud, is it? fortunately, our daughter's antics tickle me to no end, but i can only imagine what it must be like to be an extremely conservative parent - horrifying, on a daily basis. that is, if your almost-three year old is anything like ours: a wise-cracking, nose-picking, boob-flashing little bundle of joy.
ahh yes, the boobs. or "boo-boos", as we've inadvertently started calling them at our house. see, here's the thing: f has had a fixation with my boobs since she turned one. my boobs are, you could say, her comfort object. i weaned her at 10 months, thanks to a combination of recurring mastitis (mine) and teeth (hers). my goal was to breastfeed her for a year, but my goal also was to never let her use a pacifier and to not let her watch TV until she was at least two years old. so you see how well this whole goal-setting thing works out for me. anyhow, about two months after she was fully weaned, she started fiddling with my nipples absentmindedly every time i held her. at first it was kinda sweet and really, no big deal. and it still is not a big deal, except that SHE'S ALMOST THREE AND DUDE! ENOUGH ALREADY! i get more nipple stimulation in a day than your average (i'm guessing here) porn star does in, um, two days? that is, a LOT. when i am holding her (walking down the street, or through target, or on the beach) and when we're watching a movie and when she climbs up into our bed in the mornings: her hand are on my boobs. i don't even notice it anymore, it's just how it is with us. she knows not to pinch (though she takes great delight in pinching j's nipples and yelling "TWEAK TWEAK!") and generally, i pay it no mind. but lately, she's realized that she too has boo boos, and she wants you to know it.
so when her teacher started telling us that f had been showing her friends her boo boos that day, i wasn't shocked. if anything, the sweet sweet innocence of it just bowled me over. so precious, that! some parents might revel in their kids painting a picture (we do too) or not having any accidents that day (we do too) but telling me f was sharing her boo boos with her pals - my heart just swelled with love! i kid you not. i am, by no means, an exhibitionist - i just thought it was so damn funny and sweet and really, i know it is normal and is nothing to worry about. that being said, we definitely don't want it to continue, mainly because i want her to learn about her own boundaries, privacy, and how her body is HERS and hers alone. so that when little johnny jackrabbit tries to play doctor with her in kindergarten, she'll have enough sense to make sure she's wearing cute panties that day. KIDDING!
thankfully, the conversation about privacy and how our bodies are for us and not for our friends or other people, etc, has already begun in our house. every once in a while she asks to take out one of my boobs in public, so she can play with it. (wheee!) so i've talked to her about how our bodies are private, they belong to us and are special to us and no one else. and that's pretty much exactly what her teacher said she'd talked to f about that day too. we made sure we were on the same page with the message for f and promised to continue the conversation at home, and went on our merry way.
driving home, as we talked about her day at school, i mentioned that her teacher had talked to us about keeping our clothes on at school and not sharing our boo boos with any of our friends, and f said "mama! i showed 'A' my boo boos!" "a" is one of her most adored buddies, and yes, he's a little boy. so, totally trying to be nonchalant and non-judgemental, i talked with her about it a little more, just reiterating the message about privacy and stuff. when i was done, she turned to me and said, so proudly, with a big smile: "BUT, MAMA! I TOLD A TO TOUCH THEM!!" well butter my butt and call me a biscuit, i burst out laughing. because, that's my girl!
i later emailed a's mom and warned her that her son may have skipped first and gone right to second base with f at school that day. kids these days! thankfully, a's mom is awesome and knows f well enough to know it's just a passing phase. and i'm happy to report that was two days ago, and she apparently has not done it since, so maybe it has already come and gone. i know that she will outgrow her attachment to my boobs, and i hope that it comes sooner than later. i think i have nipple fatigue. (um, great band name alert: NIPPLE FATIGUE! someone use that!) she'll outgrow needing to touch them all the time and will move on to the next grand adventure. in the meantime, i remind myself that it could be worse. what if she was really into smooth jazz?