What I Meant to Say

Dear Lulu,

Sometimes I feel bad that most of these posts are about your sister. I seem to relate to her more in a blog format. When I think about her my thoughts fall here. When I think about you my thoughts turn to books. Your grandiose sayings and defiant attitude make you the perfect subject of children’s book. 

Here is one I like to write in my head to justify the ridiculous things you like to shout at me. I have to convince myself that you really don’t MEAN the things you say, you just don’t know (even though we’ve gone over it 100 times) the appropriate way to say things yet. It’s told from your perspective, because most of it is truly yours. 

Someday, when you have a Lulu of your own (and you will, because KARMA) you can convince yourself of these same things. 

What I Meant to Say

When I told you:

“I’d rather eat three bites of a snaggle-toothed toad

Served with grasshopper goulash a la mode

Than drag myself out of this warm and cozy bed.

You get up. I’m staying. Let the toad come instead.”

 

What I meant to say was:

“I’m a little bit sleepy. My eyes feel like lead.

I’ll do my best to lift up my tiresome head.

I should have been resting but I stayed up to play.

It’s my fault. I learned a lesson. Let’s get on with the day.”

 

And when I mentioned:

“I won’t wear that. It’s horrendous. Take me to jail.

Rather than make me put on that shirt with the whale.

It’s too itchy. Too purply. Too just not not my taste.

I’m also sorry you bought it. Really such a waste.”

 

What I meant to say was:

“A new shirt! What a sweet gift from a mom who cares.

And a whale? A beautiful touch for some added flair.

It’s not the exact style or shade that I’d buy.

But it was such a kind gesture that I’ll give it a try!”

 

And the time that I told you:

“School? Did I forget to mention I’m not going today?

It’s just my stomearmlegtoe isn’t feeling OK.

And though it’s true for 2 straight years there has been a pain in my head.

Can we just agree it’s much better if I stay home today instead?”

 

What I meant to say was:

Math can be boring. Frank Fruffer has mean things to say.

I don’t like the way some boys try to play.

But you say it’s important so that must be true.

I’m going to school today, even though I don’t want to.”

 

And when I might have mentioned:

“I hate every single thing you put in this meal.

I hate pizza. I hate broccoli. I would rather eat eel.

It’s too cold. It’s too spicy. It is burning my tongue.

It is not my fault your food tastes like animal dung.”

 

What I meant to say was:

“Thanks for vegetables that make my bones grow strong.

Thanks for cooking even when your days go long.

I’m not sure about kale for the third time this week

But I’ll give it a chance if it means you won’t shriek.”

 

And finally when I told you:

“I won’t say goodnight because I’m not going to sleep.

I don’t want your book or your dumb counting sheep.

The bathroom! The hall light! The sound of the cars.

I would get better sleep if you all went to mars.”

 

AND STAYED THERE.

 

What I meant to say was:

“I love you so much that it’s hard to rest.

I love you and I know today hasn’t been my best.

But sometimes I have so many hard things to say.

Tomorrow I will try to have a much better day.”

 

That is what I meant to say.

This is Lulu’s story. Feel free to read it, share it, and do anything else you want with it. But if you try to steal any part of it, you totally have to answer to her. 

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