Following My Children’s Lead

When I learned that my firstborn would be a girl, I was delighted. I wanted to give her every opportunity from the start. No stereotypical gender based toys, books or clothes for her. Then the unthinkable happened.

My little Sophia fell in love with princesses.

Where did I go wrong? All of sudden pink became her favorite color. She requested poofy dresses, glittery shoes, and of course tiaras. I finally lost the pink princess battle. In fact, I embraced it. There was no use fighting it. It would only make her wish for it harder if I denied princesses to her.

I continued to nurture her other interests. Turns out she likes science, especially chemistry. Boy, did I breathe a sigh of relief! If she wanted to be a scientist who loved ballet and princesses, I could handle that.

Instead of denying Sophia her interests, I let her take the lead. If she wanted to learn about sea cucumbers, then so be it. I taught her how to sew because she asked. We did chemistry experiments together at her request.

I’m doing the same for Jaxson. Thanks to his sister, he loves to watch My Little Pony. He also loves big trucks and other “boy” things. He’s sensitive and super active. He runs around and hits things with sticks, but he still runs over for a kiss and hug from mom.

Sometimes I still struggle with my type-a tendencies, but part of the joy of parenting is seeing your children blossom and grow.

This post was inspired by the novel Afterwards by Rosamund Lupton. After witnessing her children’s school set ablaze, Grace attempts to find the arson as her teenage daughter lies in a coma in Lupton’s suspense thriller. Join From Left to Write on April 11 as we discuss Afterwards. As a member, I received a copy of the book for review purposes.

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