My Ella Bella is a feisty little thing, knows exactly what she wants and certainly seems to have been born without the scaredy cat gene. In day to day life she appears bold, fearless and often a little terrifying which makes her current choice of reading matter a little perplexing. She’s yet to turn three, still drinks out of a beaker and doesn’t always make it to the toilet in time but hey – not for her the latest happenings in Toy Town or pondering over what tasty morsels the hungry caterpillar is eating and she certainly expresses no desire whatsoever to go on another blinking bear hunt. Instead, she’s cut straight to the chase and plumped for the self-help classic Susan Jeffer’s ‘Feel the fear and do it anyway.’ Having selected the book two days ago from the teetering pile of well thumbed paperbacks by my bed (all claiming to be able to change, fix and transform the reader’s life in around nineteen minutes) she will not be parted from it.
‘Mine!’ she squeals to anyone who attempts to prize the crumpled special edition copy out of her sweaty little mits.
‘It’s okay, darling,’ I tell her soothingly, ‘You can hold it.’ And like magic she visibly calms, her anxious little face softens and all is well. I’m not sure whether to be concerned or delighted. I thought I was an early starter on the long (agonising) road of self-discovery and soul searching when, at the tender age of fifteen, I discovered Louise L. Hay’s ‘You Can Heal Your Life.’ Looking back I wish I’d spent a whole lot more time living life instead of miserably trying to make sense of it all. In which case maybe I shouldn’t worry too much about my darling girl’s current literary leanings. Good for her, I say! Maybe she’ll figure it all it now, get the angst out of her system and that way by the time she leaves nursery in 2014 at the grand old age of four and three quarters she’ll be a walking, talking but most importantly living example of being in the moment, going with the flow and seeing joy in everything around her. But hang on, she’s already a walking, talking, living example of being in the moment, going with the flow and seeing joy in everything around her.
Who needs self help books when you’re lucky enough to share your life with little people? Best teachers in the world. Can’t believe I only just realised…