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There’s nothing quite like having an echo and a mirror and a conscience all wrapped up into a pint-sized 4-going-on-27-year-old-female.

“Sophie! I need you to come upstairs and brush your teeth now!” I say.

“You don’t need me to, you just want me to.” She says.


“I have to go to work.” I say.

“You don’t have to go, you just want to go.” She says.


“Sophie, time for dinner. You need to come on up to the table.” I say.

“I don’t need to, you just want me to.” She says.

More disturbing than the fact that she’s come up with this existential response, is the fact that I serve up these softballs on a regular basis. Who knew that I was so hellbent on need and have to?

I’ve tried to justify my claims to both of us:

  • You do need to brush your teeth so that you don’t get cavities or lose your teeth by age 10.
  • I do need to go to work so that I can make money so that we can all eat and have a roof over our heads.
  • You do need to come to the table to eat so that you stay healthy, continue to grow and don’t get food all over the floor or have the dogs steal it from your hands (or mouth—cough, cough, I’m looking at you, Baloula).

However, none of it really holds up. I believe these things to be true, I want them to happen, my intentions are pure…

…buuuuuuuttttttt. That dang little voice is making me question—everything.

Image credit: art attack

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