I want to provide some context to the story I’m about to tell by recalling the storyline of the movie, What Women Want.
If you didn’t see the movie or if you have forgotten what it is about, the movie starred Mel Gibson playing the role of an alpha male-male chauvinist.
By an accident of nature he is given the ability to read women’s minds. Because of his female mind-reading skills, Gibson’s character grows from being a contemptible, insensitive jerk to becoming like one of the girls.
His life-altering ability allows him to reach out to his daughter, stop taking women at his office for granted, and discover that monogamy and love are for real.
So here’s my story and as I tell it, I think you will see how it relates to this movie:
We have a problem with naptime on weekends around our house. I want one and the toddlers don’t!
Sunday afternoons are especially difficult because I haven’t had a chance to wear them down with outdoor play before naptime.
This last Sunday we got home from church, ate lunch, and then I started trying to get the toddlers settled down for a nap.
Kaleb had caused some problems in the nursery at church. And so the nursery workers had taken away his play keys that I had allowed him to put in his pocket and take into church. (The children aren’t supposed to bring toys into the nursery, especially something like keys, and I was stupid to think he would actually keep the keys in his pocket.)
He was really in a bad mood on the way home because I wouldn’t let him have his play keys back.
|WHAT? ME TAKE A NAP?
By the time we got home I really wanted them to get a nap. But as we arrived at the house he got in a better mood, told me he wasn’t mad any more, and began to be a sweet boy again!
On this day I said they could sleep in my bed because it’s an easier way to get them into bed. So we laid down together (me in the middle) and watched one of their Nick Jr. shows.
Then I turned off the television and told them to go to sleep.
Just as I’m about to doze off, they were starting to get playful with one another. And since I’m laying in the middle, whatever happens between them involves me!
|IS PRETENDING TO NAP THE SAME THING AS A NAP?
So I made them go up to their own beds upstairs. But the playing and talking continued.
I tried reasoning with them. I told them if they would hurry up and get to sleep, then they would have more time to play outside when they wake up from their naps.
But toddlers live in the moment, so they don’t understand that what they do now may have consequences for what they get to do (or don’t get to do) at a later time.
The playing and talking escalated to the point that I had to close the doors to their bedrooms. And they DO NOT like their bedroom doors closed!
They cried and screamed and I tried to ignore it to the extent that I went back downstairs to my bedroom and closed the door and laid down and tried to take a nap.
|I’M FEELING BETTER NOW!
In a few minutes, the door to my room slowly opened and Kenzie came in showing me her Hello Kitty stuffed toy. She told me that Hello Kitty fell off the bed and got hurt, but now she is feeling better.
Then she crawled up on the bed, snuggled up under my arm, closed her eyes and quickly fell asleep. She’s so sweet…when she’s asleep!
So that night as I was getting her bed ready for her to go to sleep, I noticed that the Hello Kitty was missing. And I remembered that the stuffed toy was still downstairs in my bed.
So then I began to think about how sweet she was at naptime to come in and curl up with me and go right to sleep…and then IT suddenly occurred to me!
When she brought the Hello Kitty to my room and told me it had fallen off the bed but was okay now, she was really talking about herself!
It was her way of telling me that she wasn’t mad any more and was ready to lay down and take a nap.
But why didn’t she just come right out and tell me how she felt? Kaleb did!
No, I’ve got to figure it out for myself.
Wouldn’t it just be easier if she would tell me exactly how she feels?
So, I’ve got to somehow get inside her head and understand her thoughts and feelings.
Now wait a minute! I think I’ve been here before!
In fact, I KNOW I’ve been here before!
This isn’t just some sort of little girl thing; it’s a big girl thing!
And now I’ve discovered its origins. It starts when they’re little bitty girls!
That’s why the little boys don’t understand the little girls. Then the little boys grow into big boys (or insensitive jerks, depending on your perspective) that still don’t understand them!
If this capability women have to lead men on and make them guess what they’re thinking and feeling starts when they’re toddlers, then…
It must be hard-wired in them!
They’re designed to confound men!
|CUTE, CUDDLY, & COY!
Why don’t girls–little and big–just tell us guys exactly what is wrong, what you think, how you feel, why you’re mad. It would be so much easier for the guys!
So guys, unless you have some life-altering experience like Mel Gibson’s character did in the movie that allows you to get inside their head, you’re destined to guess what women want!
Hopefully, every once in a while you will have an epiphany like I did and realize how wonderfully and incredibly sensitive and loving…and coy…these human beings of the female persuasion are!
Yes, even the wee ones!