The day before we dropped Leah off at camp we met some friends in Waco to swim and have some fun. Leah is roughly the same age as our friends’ kids and everyone enjoyed hanging out in the cool water in 100 degree central Texas heat.
While I was watching Leah swim I noticed as she lifted her arms up to try to do an underwater handstand (remember those? So fun) that there was HAIR under her armpits.
And then I died.
‘Cause, you know. She’s NINE. NIIIIIINE. I started to wonder if this pubescent phenomenon was happening, uh, elsewhere for her. (And NO I didn’t know already because she’s getting shy about being naked around people and I don’t go around asking her to show me her hoo-hah.)
So, I asked. And? Yes. A little.
And then I died again and looked at Husband who responded, “Woah, yeah, that’s all YOU. I’m in charge of That Boy and his penis.” Nice.
So what was I supposed to do? Leah had been wearing deodorant all school year because there had been a certain funk that was developing so I thought I had it covered. Now was I supposed to let her shave? At NINE?! And I was dropping her off for a month of sleepaway camp the next day?! Awesome.
I decided that I’d let it go, but talk to her counselors to tell them very specifically that if for ANY reason she became aware and self-conscious about it that they had my full permission to teach her to shave her underarms. Likewise if anyone else pointed it out – I certainly didn’t want her to be ridiculed for it. They said that girls at this age don’t usually notice those things, but just in case they understood and had a bag of razors for just such an occasion.
I never really thought more about it until she came home and it was again apparent she was developing hair. Today I called the pediatrician just to ask if this is something we should be concerned about and he said he’d like for her to come in for some bloodwork to see if she does, indeed, have early onset puberty.
And then I died a third time.
I asked the nurse what this could mean and she said that there are ways, if it is the case, that this can be slowed down. I then asked if there is truly a reason to treat it besides the obvious reason of giving Leah giving her mother an aneurysm over this? And she didn’t really give me a good answer – just that looking at the bloodwork will tell us if there is a need to do anything.
So, back to the shaving. Leah’s in gymnastics camp which means lots of tank top leotards, sweat and arms flying every which way. What would you do? Would you let your NINE year old shave?
‘Cause I’m kinda at a loss. Which happens when you’re dead.