“Did it self”

Photography: Lamb Loves Fox by Katherine Heise

By Jeremy Majid

You will not believe where you can get to, and what you can achieve, if in old age you are still exclaiming “did it self”. 

My daughter is approaching two and quite likes to have a go at pretty much everything. From routine activities like putting her shoes on to trying to help out with the household chores. Often she fails, followed by “Daddy fix”, but sometimes she succeeds and does something for the first time. On these occasions we say to her with genuine pride: “You did it by yourself” which she translates to “did it self”. 

Not a day goes by without “did it self”.

It’s not the words themselves that convey the meaning, it’s the rising tone in her voice and big smile on her face after she has conquered yet another obstacle.

With the confidence this brings, she tries everything with the assumption that she will be successful. In the process, she discovers her limits; no, she can’t carry or even drag a fully loaded shopping bag, but to our surprise she can lift and walk with a 2kg bucket of yoghurt. Sometimes I wish she had more fear, particularly when we’re near cars, but most of the time I admire her boundless enthusiasm. 

This week was her last playgroup for the year and to celebrate the occasion all of the kids were given a helium-filled balloon. My daughter was entranced and the smile on her face when it was tied to her wrist is something I wanted to capture forever. She wanted to take that balloon with her everywhere that day. By the evening though, the balloon was no longer trying to push through the ceiling, it was content hanging in space.

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