The New Story

Sometime back, I mentioned that Story wanted to be and in her mind effectively became goth. Well, that experiment lasted only a couple of weeks. She had the solitude and black clothes down pat. The not-talking part is what got her. She’d be gabbing away happily, as usual, and then realize she was supposed to be in character. Immediately, she’d shut her mouth, look sullen, and sulk off. She was not happy. The lack of chatter was a bit jarring for me, but a bit refreshing in a way if I’m honest. With that identity out the window, she hunted for a new one. She was Australian for a while, which merged back into her comfortable British, and there she stayed for quite a while. I thought that was the end of the search. Until a few weeks ago.

Story came home from school complaining that she couldn’t see very well. When I pressed for details, oddities such as black dots and intermittent blurriness came up. I got glasses in second grade, and she’s in first, so it’s entirely possible that the cursed family eyesight caught up with her. It was also possible she was just bored. So I gave it a little while. She kept complaining. Eventually she asked me when she could go to the eye doctor. I made the appointment, and she was overjoyed. She just knew she was going to get glasses, and she couldn’t wait. That’s when I knew for sure something was up.

At the exam, I took the doctor aside and told him that Story really wanted glasses and she might very well sabotage the exam. She tried, but he was ready and worked things around to find out exactly what she could and couldn’t see. The kid has perfectly healthy eyes and 20/20 vision. Nonetheless, she was insistent that she needed glasses. With a nod from me, the doctor wrote out a “prescription” on the back of a business card for her and sent us to Claire’s to pick out her brand-new spectacles. The lucky girl got two pairs, just in case she was careless and lost a pair. She beamed and raved about how much better she could see as soon as she tried them on.

The next day, she picked out an outfit to “draw attention to” her new animal-print accessory. She strutted into the kitchen and asked if she looked like a nerd. Not quite sure where this was going, I hesitated. In true Story fashion, she continued the conversation without me. “I certainly hope I do. I’ve wanted to be a nerd my whole life.” She grabbed a book and tucked it in the crook of her arm. I asked if she wanted to put it in her backpack, and she scowled at my suggestion. Apparently the book was a prop for her new persona.

Story’s new identity has stuck so far. She loves the attention and being told how smart she looks. I am hoping her love of the glasses and “nerd” persona has a long life, preferably through to the age she actually does need glasses.