Not Mean Girls

Last weekend was Jada's 7th birthday party.  We let her invite eight of her closest girl friends, and seven were able to make it.  (I had a lovely conversation with the mother of the one girl who couldn't make it.  She was nice enough to call me directly to express her daughter's lament that she couldn't attend, due to a prior family obligation involving the celebration of her husband's birthday.  Yup, my daughter and her friends are at the age that even their own father's birthday party can't hold a candle to a friend's.)

It was a lot of fun watching Jada and her friends interacting with one another.  Fun, and also refreshing.  Maybe because we've all seen so many TV shows and movies in which young women get ruthlessly sorted into cliques: the popular elite, the artsy crowd, the misfits, et al.  (Did I mention I've started watching old episodes of Glee?)  So it was sweet to see eight little girls just having fun together, not cutting each other up or calculating how they could climb up in the pecking order or worrying about differences in physical beauty or verbal talent or social skills.

Here's my favorite example.  At one point, one girl was about to tell a story to the group when she realized it might be potentially embarrassing to one of the girls.  So she quietly asked that girl if it was OK to tell the story.  The other girl shyly shook her head, so she said, "never mind," and soon enough they had changed the topic to something else.  How's that for being sensitive, discreet, and kind?

I realize that the day is nigh that life will get more complicated for my little princess.  She'll start to like boys, get her heart broken, and wrack her brains trying to figure out how to navigate teenagerdom.  Until then, I will enjoy this innocence and I will be thankful she has such good friends.   

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