For those of you who know Danna, you are aware of her bubbly personality, her sweet smile, and her ‘free spirit’ approach to life. Of course, as her mother, I am extremely proud of her. But recently I have discovered a depth of character in her that I didn’t know a 3 ½ years old could possess.
Many of you know that Danna was diagnosed in May ’07 with nephrotic syndrome. This is a kidney condition that relapses on a whim and results in steroid treatment and a low sodium diet for weeks at a time. As the cook in the house, low sodium is DIFFICULT, especially for little kids. It means no hot dogs, no chips, no ready-made food, or happy meals from McDonalds. (The immediate positive result is lots of fresh fruits and veggies and very healthy meals for all.)
Last week, for our Friday Family Fun Night, we stayed home and watched a movie. If you watch a movie, there has to be popcorn, right?! We have the mindset that it isn’t a movie unless there is popcorn! But Danna can’t have popcorn; the rest of us can, so what to do??
Without a complaining or grumbling, Danna watched the entire movie snacking on low-sodium crackers while the rest of us shared a bowl of buttery, salty popcorn. At the end, while the credits were rolling, Danna very quietly asked if she could have one piece of popcorn. I gave her one, not sure what to expect. I mean, who of us can eat just one piece of popcorn?! Would she ask for another or cry that life wasn’t fair? Would she whine about not having her own bowl of popcorn? She did none of that. She ate her one piece of popcorn and that was that – no protests or begging for more. She was satisfied with her one taste of popcorn. And this is when I discovered an amazing strength in my 3 ½ yr old daughter. I’m not sure if it is will power or the ability to do the right thing or what, but I was overwhelmed at my daughter’s strength to be able to taste just one piece of popcorn and be satisfied.