After hoping for the past few weeks that we'd got away with it, Ruby finally has Chickenpox. It started with one boy at nursery about 3 weeks ago, and following on from that she was a bit off-colour for a fortnight. Nothing specific, just a bit grumpy, a bit of a cold and an upset tummy. But then she perked up and I assumed it had passed.
On Wednesday I took her to nursery and the 'poxometer' board outside read '7 cases of chickenpox confirmed'. Uh-oh!
Thursday morning we were getting ready, I was due in London for an event and Ruby was looking forward to her Auntie collecting her from nursery at lunchtime and taking her to story time in the afternoon. She showered and was fine. I dried her and she was fine. She sat in her dressing gown eating her cereal while I got ready. Then I heard it: "Mummy, I've got a spot".
I checked her over and she had 5 spots, but they were unmistakeably the pox. She was distraught, denied she had 'chicken pops' and was adamant she should go to nursery. Hasty ringing around and alternative arrangements were made.
My girl wasn't unwell, she just had spots. Over the next few days these started to irritate and itch and she's having trouble sleeping, and is grumpy we can't go out, but apart from that she's ok.
Until that is, she said to me, with a look of absolute pure sadness "Mummy, I'm not beautiful anymore". My heart nearly broke. I had to fight back the tears, and promise her she is, and always will be beautiful.
What saddened me most was where she'd got the idea that beauty was to do with her face or her skin. I need to work on this, and help her understand that beauty is within.
We are not a particularly vain family. We don't spend a fortune on ourselves, we don't have walls full of studio photography self portraits. But I have told Ruby every single day that she is beautiful and I love her. I want her to grow up with self confidence and belief.
A few spots will not change the fact that she is the most beautiful person in the world.