My nephew is tall. In normal human terms he is about 6’6″ – which yes is tall, but not scary. But when you are three years old that height is giant-like. Like more than giant-like – it’s like if you combined King Kong, the biggest dinosaur, the tallest giraffe, and then an actual mythical giant and THEN MADE IT INTO A MAN. That’s what Astrid saw when we arrived in Indiana on Friday evening – a mythical giant creature in a form a man walking towards her. And she freaked.
A couple of things… 1. My nephew is probably the sweetest, sappiest, gentlest, kindest, humblest, downright amazingly quiet, lovable and friendly man you will even know. A gentle giant if you will…and 2. Astrid doesn’t care – because he’s basically a large man…and 3. Astrid doesn’t like men.
Astrid didn’t even like her own dad until she was about two years old.
I cannot convince Astrid that most men are nice – even with those deep voices and scruffy facial hair. And I know that someday she will grow out of her fear of ALLTHEMEN – ESPECIALLY THEBIGMEN – just like my other two daughters did. Some now may call her silly. Some may call her smart.
In the meantime, my brother (who is not a giant) loves kids. Loves his nieces and just wants Astrid to let him hold her and give her a few dozen hugs. But Astrid wants nothing to do with all of that.
So he has to photobomb pictures just to get close to Astrid.
Please don’t tell Astrid that Uncle Troy was that close to her.
But progress was made and by the end of the weekend she was giving him hugs. Tentative hugs, but hugs…and as for her cousin – the ‘weawwy weawwy big guy” – well he was happy to finally get a few high-fives and fist-bumps…. I call that progress.
And hopefully next time – as she grows, and he has finished growing – she won’t see his height, but only his warm smile and open arms.
What is your child afraid of?