Wednesday, September 26, 2007
(Pipo at maybe 5yo in Haiti)
It is possible for a child to grow up in a 3rd world country and be spoiled. It is possible for that child to occasionally think that the world revolves around them, and that they are 'special' and are to be treated differently than the rest of the household.
When Pipo first got here, we let a lot of things slide. I understood how many adjustments he needed to make, and that he needed the time and space to come around on his own time. Much of this had to do with food. I knew things were so different for him here, and in the first months, we were fixing seperate meals for him, or arranging family meals around his preferences. Slowly, he bagan to try new things and learn to like much of our american food. It's been almost 2 years now, and he eats what everyone else is eating. But occasionally, the old Pipo breaks out and wants his "own" seperate dinner. And it drives this mom nuts!
After speaking with many of the people who spent time down in his village, specifically in the hospital, I have realized he was catered to there. Poor sick little Pipo, all alone in the hospital, with both his parents gone, and his grandmother off to the market every day. Now I am not downplaying any of this. He has had a hard life. To be a very sick little boy with both your parents dead is a tough situation to put it mildly. But this boy learned to work it. I have had people tell me that if he had been told "no" by anyone, all he had to do was show his big puppydog eyes and give one of his charming smiles, and he would eventually get what he wants. Well puppydog eyes don't work in Fitzville.
Honestly, this kid has come so far in less than two years. But somedays, he is just one of 7, and I don't have the patience for "I don't like that, I want something else." Tough beans kid... take your puppydog eyes to dad... he's always a sure bet to say yes.