"Did you like the pink elephant?" I asked, more excited that I probably should have been. The little voice on the other end of the phone told me that she really liked the elephant. "What about the butterfly?" Again, excitedly anticipating the answer. The butterfly, too, met with approval. We weren't able to be there for Ruby's fourth birthday party on the weekend. We had a gift there amongst the others so she would know we had thought of her. We spoke with her on the day of the party.
But her birthday actually fell on a week day. We'd gone shopping and found the perfect card, wrote four wishes for a four year old. Then we found two lovely small broaches to put inside. One an elephant with sparkly pink stones, one a butterfly with sparkling coloured stones. They were the perfect size for a child's coat or a sweater. We took great care in choosing amongst the broaches. The sales guy said, "She must be a special lady you are shopping for." We said, in unison, "She is indeed." Ruby really is a little lady and she is one that knows her own tastes.
The card was mailed and we then looked forward to talking to her about them on the phone. She told first me and then Joe that she really liked the broaches. I asked her which one she liked better. She said, 'I like them both the same.' I pressed her to pick one. Ruby has already learned to be exasperated with adults who just don't get it. "Dave, my hearts big enough to love them both. One doesn't have to be better than the other."
I passed the phone over to Joe and he, not hearing what she had said, asked, "So which one are you going to wear first." There was a long pause. Then she said, "I'll wear them both, that way they both get to be first."
I hope that Ruby grows to treat the feelings of people as carefully as she does the elephant and the butterfly.