Antonia has never suffered from a lack of self-confidence. When Antonia was only three, she and her mother got into a disagreement when they were someplace far from home. In frustration Kathy told Antonia that she would have to drive herself home if she continued to behave badly. Apparently undaunted by the challenge, Antonia saw only one obstacle: 'But I don't have the keys!' she cried. Possibly in response to this predicament, a few months later Antonia (then aged 4) told me: 'Daddy, now that I know how to ski and I know how to swim, I think it's time I learned how to drive.'
When Mariah found herself kidnapped by pirates and trapped by a lie of her own invention, she became sulky and surly in a way that mimics how Antonia often responds to problems. It was only when Mariah began to treat those around her with respect and to trust her natural intelligence and dexterity that she found a way out of her predicament and enjoyed success in her relationships with others.
With Antonia, age has smoothed some of the rough edges of over-confidence in ways more subtle than could the tip of Arekelian's whip. When Antonia was six, for example, she said, 'My memory's not so good. My brain's not big enough yet. When I was four, I was the smartest person in the family.'