Friday, February 9

Signs of Things to Come....,

Oh - I should have seen this coming. I've had glimpses but either didn't pay attention or refused to believe that I have an incredibly strong willed child with more stamina that I have. But after 2 and 1/2 years I've come to realize that we have, in Rachel, a very bright, very sweet, soft spoken, stubborn, boundary testing, independent little girl.

Rachel's personality is a lot like my own. By way of example, think of personality types as falling along a spectrum and invision most people with personalities that span just a small portion of that spectrum. Others, like myself and Rachel, have personalities that span a wide swath along the spectrum. Kind, thoughtful, caring, warm - but stubborn, hotheaded, quick to anger and quick to forgive. It's a tough personality type. It's tough for anyone with it and sometimes can be tough on people around us. We can be demanding - but also very giving. We are quick to anger, but forgive easily and are intensely loyal.

I'm really describing myself and it's definitely too early to ascribe all of these traits to my 2nd child.

But I am a little worried that she and I are butting heads and that I haven't dealt with it very well over the past few days. My job as her mom is to figure out the best way to parent her - to motivate her to want to do what she should and not fight authority. If I can do my job well I'll raise a daughter who doesn't challenge the world in a way that makes life harder than it needs to be. I don't want to think of the consequences of not doing my job well. I believe this is the biggest and most important parenting challenge I've faced.

If it's true and she really is alot like me, then I have to remember back to the things that I needed most growing up. Maybe just a little extra love, some firm understanding, encouragement, wiggle room, guidance and acceptance. I didn't do well with the punitive parenting style employed in my home. No child would.

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