Self image

I’m starting to think that Kenyan’s have a very  different idea on how to help children develop positive self image, well actually, a different idea on interacting with children in general.

My first clue to this was the large Kenyan man working in the toy store that grabbed Lucy’s arm and said in a not child friendly voice, “Hey little girl, come here, or I’ll take you to the police!”

Scary.  Sure, that will endear any child to you.  Absolutely.

Eli is a little short for his age.  He’s well aware of this fact especially as many locals like to point it out to him.  Over, and over, and over.  The waitress at Java House almost had Eli in tears insisting that he could only be 2 and not 4 years.  Not being that short.  He was so insistent I had to step in and vouch for him.

This is Eli’s self-portrait, and it’s actually pretty darn accurate, all the way down to his ears that stick out a little.  All the better to hear you with!

Spikey hair, check.  Short legs, check.  Biggish ears, check.  No arms.  Hmmm.  I’m no child psychologist, oh wait, I’m a school psychologist….but I’m choosing to think that for now, it’s because he’s happy letting mom help him out rather than being helpless.

Speaking of helpless, that was me when Eli came home telling me what his teacher kept saying to him the last week of school before break.  I can hear it being said in jest, but you know, this kid is getting a little sensitive about his self image when it comes to height.  His teacher said, “Eli, you must be shrinking!!!  You are shrinking.  You are getting shorter”! 

I laughed when he first told me.  Wrong response.  Bad mom.  Gotta work on that. 

He’s actually perfect, just he way he is!


6 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Cindi Bailey on December 21, 2009 at 11:13 pm

    Tell Eli that his cousin Alek is the same way, and that we tell Alek God made him that way for a reason, and that he is special just the way he is. People are so cruel, we have some of the same issues with alek. We also tell people that what Alek lacks in height he makes up for in Brains and Creativity


  2. Posted by Cindi Bailey on December 21, 2009 at 11:15 pm

    That picture is definitly a picture that a four year old would draw. Twos cannot draw in that much detail yet.


  3. Posted by Andy Frahm on December 22, 2009 at 3:20 am

    Just give him a reminder that Uncle Andy used to be the shortest kid in class, and look at me now!


  4. Posted by Craig on December 23, 2009 at 6:59 pm

    I got teased just the same about being hairy. Fortunately I was a little older than Eli when that started. I was seven.


  5. Posted by Carol Barnum on December 23, 2009 at 8:23 pm

    I was thinking of Andy! Such a NICE tall young man, and brother Jim waited a long while to grow tall also. SPECIAL COMES IN ALL SIZES.


  6. Posted by Barb Palmer on December 24, 2009 at 7:44 am

    I have never met Eli in person, but I SO enjoy the photos and antics of this precious, precious little boy! He is very endearing. Thanks for all you are doing and keeping up the communication! Your blog is my “first read” when I sit down at my computer; it is SO interesting. 🙂


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