Friday, January 22, 2010

Fear of Fuzzball

Fully understanding another human is an impossibility. We come close with some people, spouses, if we're lucky; best friends, certainly; maybe our same sex parent, as we age. I don't know how much I'll ever understand about Violet. I know her better than anyone but I definitely don't understand her. I assume to understand a lot of her toddler behavior and relate to it in the context of "what kids do" but the motivation behind the behavior is alien to me.

Here are a list of "I wonders" about Violet:

Why does she always take a bite of the dog's treat before she hands it over?
Why doesn't the feeling of a turd in her pants creep her out?
What does she like about Dora?
Why does she love broccoli?
Why must she always pull off her socks even when her feet are freezing?
Why doesn't she understand that bodyslamming the cat will hurt her?

As a person who has overcome her share of fears and still harbors a few others, the one thing I respect thoroughly are Violet's hot button creepouts. That is not to say that I understand them all. My childhood fears--water, men with beards--may have seemed irrational to my parents, too. But at least both of those things--water, men with beards--are actually capable of doing harm to a little girl. Whether or not they ever had or would hurt me was irrelevant. I could drown in water. I could be abducted by a man with a beard. It could happen.

Violet's #1 fear right now...? Fuzzballs. Yup, dustbunnies, lintballs, floorfuzz. I don't think there are any documented cases of fuzzballs actually hurting anyone. It makes so little sense, it is hard to not take advantage of the poor kid for a laugh. I'm fairly sure this is how phobias begin...

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