Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Free to be you and me

I while back I was at a dinner party with a friend. My friend was pregnant with her first child. She was expressing a fear that I think a lot of parents have. She was afraid her daughter would become a person she could not relate to. She said that she was worried that her daughter would grow up to be in to football and cheer leading and make up and all of the things that she knew nothing about. Another woman at the table said, "If you don't raise her to be that way then she won't turn out like that." It just made me chuckle.

Every single one of my children were born with their very own personality. If I would have chosen for them how they would have turned out...well...I would have gotten it all wrong. My oldest "Ivy" is 12. She never wanted to wear the clothes that I picked out for her. She never wanted to read the books I loved as a child. And you know what? That is okay. She has her own style, she likes her own things. I loved to read historical fiction when I was her age. She is writing her own fantasy novel. I liked rock music, she loves top 40. I was in art, she loves the theater and dance. I love that she is her own person. I wouldn't change a thing about her. I may not understand her all the time, but I love her.

"Birdy" is my middle child. Right now she goes to a preschool (we are almost done and then its "stay home with mommy time") where all the little girls show up looking like pictures out of a catalog. Its hard sometimes not fall in to the trap, but Birdy made it very clear that she was not going to wear bows in her hair. She was not going to wear adorable little dresses and she was not going to wear lacy socks or mary janes. She was not going to let any one dress her like a doll. And you know what? That is okay. She is not a doll. She is a person, with her own opinions and ideas. Every day she is learning more and more about herself. She is discovering her likes and dislikes and who she wants to be as a person. What a disservice I would be doing for her if I denied her that opportunity by forcing my own will on her all the time.

Now, of course, there is a time and a place for mommy to be the boss. I don't want any one to think that I just let my children rule the roost, but some things have to be their own. "Bug" is turning 1 year old soon. He is already beginning this journey of self discovery that his sisters have been on. He will learn and grow and find out all of his likes and dislikes. I may have my own ideas of how he will turn out, but if there is one thing my other two have taught me its that he will find his own path. And you know what? That is okay.

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