Dropdown menu

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Life with an evil genius

As many of you know, I often refer to my 5yo as The Terrorist. We've been having a rough go of it with her lately. It's not that she's bad. It's just that she finds herself in a lot of scrapes. If you've ever watched the movie, Dennis the Menace, well... my daughter is the female Dennis. It's not that she means to get into trouble. Like Dennis, she's curious. She likes to explore. She likes to see what things do. And, she's determined to find the answer despite people telling her no.

Recently, as I've dealt with one incident after another, I've found myself thinking of her as an evil genius. Not quite the right description, because I don't think she's evil. But you know, as I look at cartoons with the stereotypical evil genius, I've seen the similarities between the evil genius and my daughter. The truth is, she's a smart kid. She gets into all kinds of trouble and manages to wiggle her way out of it because she bats those beautiful blue eyes and has a plausible enough story to make you wonder. I'm fascinated by the stories of how the evil geniuses began. Because the truth is, none of the evil geniuses I can think of began as evil. So many of them turned evil after being misunderstood in some way. I can't help but wonder if these evil geniuses had found some positive outlet for the wrong done to them, would they have channeled their energy into something good instead?

This week, the school called over an incident with my own evil genius. As we sorted out the situation, I started thinking about the path she's on. As her teacher pointed out, she's one of the brightest kids in there. Academically, she's doing great. Socially just as well. People like her. She's charismatic and gets the kids to do whatever she wants. In fact, this rash of trouble surprised her teacher. We dug deeper and realized that my little one could very easily become a truly evil genius. Her teacher and I both agree that she's not a bad kid. But the challenge is keeping her on a path that will channel her powers for good, not evil.

I'm starting to realize that it's a lot easier to chase a child in the direction of becoming an evil genius. It's easier to simply yell, punish, and move on. Certainly with all the stresses of my life, it's more convenient. And yet, it never fixes the problem. Nor does it channel her energy into something positive. I'm finding my creative powers, patience, and ability to understand stretched in every direction as I try to figure out the powers of this uniquely gifted little girl.

I have to admit I'm exhausted. I want this to be a million times easier than it is. But as a mother who loves her daughter, I believe it's worth the effort. And I want to encourage those of you living with an evil genius to keep trying. Figure out how to channel that beautiful brilliance, the curiosity, the desire to master one's universe, and all the other behaviors that make you crazy into something positive. Keep praying. Don't give up.

Today's post is not about having the answers. The truth is, I have no idea if my attempts at channeling my evil genius into something positive will actually work. But I love that little girl, and even though being her mom is very hard, it's also pretty rewarding. She's an amazing kid.


Diane Marie Shaw said...

I have a different name for your daughter if you are searching for more descriptive words:
Inquisitive Genius
A God given gift. Now if He will reveal to you how to channel it, your life, and her's, will be easier.

smithsk said...

You are blessed with a gifted kid and blessed with discernment to realized that.