Gazing into the mirror, I smile softly, knowingly, while saying “You are an explorer.”

This is not a self-help book mantra, though it could be. Moments before I was hurrying to pee, wash my hands and rush back to my family waiting for me at the penguins. But reaching for the tap, I slow right down when there, in a Zoo bathroom, etched in the mirror before me, I read ‘You are an explorer.’

And I feel it, I really do. I am an explorer.

Almost five hours later, after a day of watching gorillas dance, wild cats snooze, elephants discharge alarmingly large amounts of excrement, macaws serenade, bears escaping the heat with a dip in the water and Komodo dragons sticking their tongue out at us, I return to that bathroom, this time with Kaya.

When I share with Kaya the words before her, her eyes widen, her smile stretches infinitely, and her brows crinkle inquisitively as if to ask “How did they know that?”

When I read it, my smile spreads with the awareness that this is a message to all. A reminder.

Kaya sees it as a secret message, meant for her and her alone. I love that.

In a similar vain, I was recently reading Brennyn Be Happy when she looks up at me with wondrous eyes and says “This is my book mommmy. For me because it’s talking to me!” and for a moment I don’t get it and try to explain that this book is her and Kaya’s but quickly catch on. She does not understood that this book was written for all and that there are thousands of copies out in the world. She only knows that as we read this book now, it is talking to her, telling her very clearly to ‘B happy being YOU’ and I can’t argue her that.

Both of my girls, in recent days, have approached a mirror, seen themselves and remarked,

‘Practically perfect in every way!’

Two of those times, uttered while buck naked.

Thank you my girls for being exploring, happy, practically perfect girls, every day, in your own way!


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