“What do you mean, you’re out of lemons? You can’t be out of lemons I bought four dozen lemons for this lemonade stand and you are already out of lemons! Do you know how much lemons cost?”

I realize at this moment that a six-year-old with big dreams does not know how much lemons cost. And she also might not know what to make lemonade you have to open the lemons and juice them. So the mystery of this conversation is actually, “Where did you hide the lemons, Sophie?” Her eyes glaze over. It is the look they get when she is caught. Caught between pity tears and challenging my role as her mommy.

“They kept laughing at me because they couldn’t drink the lemons.”

I hold a laugh somewhere in my stomach. I know that laughing is the worst thing to do since the neighbors had just laughed at her too.

“Sophie, why didn’t you wait for me to get out the juicer to help you make the lemonade?”

She looks around because she doesn’t know what a juicer looks like and can’t understand that the lemons are not already juice underneath their skin. “We have to MAKE the juice?” I nod.

She puts her hands over her eyes and pulls them down towards her chin. It’s her “I’m stupid face” she makes when she gets frustrated with the world. She’s six and she has more frustration in her baby tooth than I did when I was sixteen.

“Where did you hide the lemons?”

She walks away resolved in the loss of the battle and weighed down by her smallness, I assume that she is going to lead me to the lemons, which is why I follow. She holds her chin high as we walk into her playroom. All of her toys are outside their usual chest.

I pretend that they are not underneath the bed or bumping up from underneath teddy-bear-print-blanket. Sophie reaches for the trunk chest and pushes it open. Inside the lemons are piled up to the brim. Four dozen lemons in a trunk.

“When life gives you lemons…” Some jokes just aren’t funny.

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