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Saturday, March 15, 2014

The Tinkerbell Syndrome


Behold, my daughter's avatar:

Coy. Cute. Deadly.

When Miriam is around, you're going to see Tinkerbell. Tink is emblazoned on her wall, backpacks, clothing, wheelchair van, and just about any other thing that is associated with her. 

We are picky, because THIS is the Tink we revere:

Plenty of attitude, despite partial nudity.
…and NOT this:

Behold, the face of evil.
We do not consider the Fairies-brand of 3D-talking-tink as canon. We consider her and her demonic BFFs as abominations. Tinkerbell does not talk. She does not have girl problems, does not hang with nerd-fairies, does not sing and wax poetic about how she wished she fit in as if she ever went to middle school.

No. Tinkerbell is a one-way thinker. She is either giving her heart and soul to save you from a bomb, or she is plotting to kill you because you dared look at her boyfriend the wrong way.

That's more like it.
Why, you ask?

To understand this, let's take a little tangent. A long time ago, a therapist gave an analogy of how our minds work. We are constantly processing our world much like a mighty freeway, with constantly shifting information, ideas and feelings.

This is your brain. Most days it's rush hour.
A child with cerebral palsy, however, is often dominated by their world - and can sometimes be limited in their cognitive skills - so that it seems like they have room for one thought or emotion at a time. He likened such a child's brain to a two-lane winding road.

Miriam's brain. Serene, and slightly dangerous.

This seemed to match her behavior since birth. It did not take much to change her mood. If she was upset, a little distraction switched her to a happy place. Her happiness could also end in a heartbeat, especially if she was bored or uncomfortable. Her focus would target one thing at a time.

In other words, one minute she would be THIS:

She has such a glow about her.
…and then she could turn into THIS.

What the shizzle did you just say?
As she has grown older, this two-lane-winding-road has grown more complex and subtle, as she has more experience and more confidence in her ability to share her feelings. If she's ticked off today, no amount of petty distraction will lure her from an arse-whuppin'. She gonna let you know. Alternately, she is more than happy to share her love and excitement to more people, to let them feel that she enjoys their company.

But this goes back to the original question: Why Tinkerbell? 

Soon after this analogy was presented to us, we discovered this quote from Barrie's original novel Peter Pan, on the reason why Tinkerbell had the audacity to try and kill Wendy-bird:
"Tink was not all bad: or, rather, she was all bad just now, but, on the other hand, sometimes she was all good. Fairies have to be one thing or the other, because being so small they unfortunately have room for one feeling only at a time."
Sharla and I looked at each other, and it was official. Tinkerbell is Miriam's avatar. She represents a woman with passion, with sass, with a strong spirit - someone who can make you fly and pull your hair at the same time.

There you go.

Yep. There she is.
Soon after hip surgery. How many Tinks can you find?

I was informed recently that Tink's official name is actually Tinker Bell. Here is my official response:


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