*Warning: contains a Frozen spoiler, just in case you haven’t seen it *
There’s a point in Frozen where I always, no matter how many times I’ve watched it (that day), want to shout at the TV.
A young Elsa has accidentally injured Anna with her icy magic and the family go to the trolls for help in making her better.
The Troll King, Grand Pabbie, recommends taking away all the magic and even Anna’s memories of magic to be safe.
“But don’t worry, I’ll leave the fun,” he says.
It’s at this point I want to shout: “No, leave the magic too! Who are you to take away the magic?” (Even though it would make a very different – probably much shorter – film).
There doesn’t seem to be very much magic left by the time you reach adulthood, especially these days – unless you’re Elsa, obviously – and, to me, it feels wrong to take it away.
Two and a half seems like a magical age.
I mean, when Freya’s not in a huff about being given the yellow fork instead of the green one or because I made her wear pajamas to bed rather than a sparkly dress, of course.
She has a personality now.
She’s loud, spirited and ridiculously friendly; a proper people person.
She has a sense of humour – although is often entertained by the most random things – and some of what she comes out with has me belly laughing (“You’re the best cook in the whole wide world, mummy”).
She’s definitely a little performer. I quite often get treated to song and dance numbers while she uses her potty (with the lid on) as a stage.
The simplest things – a muddy puddle, a rainbow, a cardboard box to play in – fill her with joy.
Her imagination roams far and free. I listen to the conversations she has with her toys sometimes as I’m washing up in the next room and the fantasies she has them act out are full of fairies, princesses, robots and trolls with the occasional Octonaut thrown in for good measure.
She’s caring, too – and growing more so every day.
And there’s the wonder. She feasts on new experiences (sometimes literally). Last week she had pizza and an Easter egg for the first time (not together). Each day she seems to learn something and it’s amazing to think how much her world has expanded in such a short time.
Life is bright, happy and innocent – just as it should be for all children.
But, at the same time, I can already see outside influences having an impact on her, changing her personality – maybe even taking away a bit of the magic of being two and a half.
I’m not sure how to stop it – or even if it should be stopped. I mean, obviously, her personality is not fully formed but it feels like some important things are being altered.
For example, Freya has never met a stranger. Every child is a friend; she knows no other option.
I’m not a hugger (outside of immediate family). It’s not that I am against it, it’s just not the way I was brought up. Her dad is the same. And yet Freya bounds up to other children, usually the same age or older (thankfully never adults), and practically hurls herself at them. Obviously, like me, not everyone is a keen hugger so there have been several occasions where she’s been pushed away or the child on the receiving end has run off.
When she was younger she was oblivious but I’ve started to see confusion and then the sadness creep in.
I’ve tried to explain that she should ask if they want a hug first but I can tell she’s becoming wary of other children for fear of being rejected. She hasn’t hugged another child for a few weeks now. While it’s not a bad thing to be more aware of other people’s feelings, I worry that something natural, something that’s her, is being made unnatural.
“Hello! My name is Freya, what’s your name?” She said to a little girl the same age, if not older, behind us in queue who promptly ran and hid behind her mum’s leg.
I get being shy. My mum says I hated everyone, particularly men, and would scream if anyone so much as even looked at me let alone tried to speak (I’m pretty much the same now*).
So I get it and yet I see Freya’s inherent friendliness being subdued and I feel a little pinprick in my heart each time she’s rebuffed.
She gives me a look that says: “What do I do now?” But I was the kid hiding, I’m not any help. I try and explain being shy but it just doesn’t compute.
It’s like the magic is being taken away.
Maybe that’s life? Maybe, just as in Frozen, it has to happen that way? And, in reality, if that’s all I have to worry about given what else is going on in the world, I’ll take it.
But I still feel like I should rally against it.
I wonder how she will have changed at five, 15 or 39.
*I’m not. Honest.
PS If you were the person who nominated me in the Mum and Dad (MAD) blog awards, THANK YOU. I was incredibly touched, especially to be in the Best Blog Writer category. It made my day.