My sweet baby girl is officially a school kid.
The amount of attitude I get sometimes fills me with terror when I consider the teenage years.
If stubbornness (is that even a word??!) is a genetic trait then it's going to be a bumpy ride at times. Anyone who has ever met me can confirm that I have it in spades and her dad is just as bad as I am, if not worse!
Let me add however that being stubborn and sticking to your guns isn't always a bad thing. It's what will make her a vivacious, motivated determined woman later on. A cyclonic force to be reckoned with.
But dealing with these same traits I'm proud that she possesses as a parent will be exceedingly challenging at (many) times. Especially when I know that I'm just as bad!
I had a moment of clarity about the whole thing today while asking her for what I swear was the 17th time in less than 30 minutes to go into the bathroom and start getting ready to have a shower to wash the days worth of sweat, dirt and play before getting into her PJ's.
She marched into the bathroom. Crossed her arms, pouted and said defiantly "NO."
I explained to her that she has been unwell and a shower will make her feel a lot better and that her hair needed to be washed and blow dried before bedtime (She has had a cold and a shocking cough, the blow drying was only to prevent getting sicker, I'm not creating one of "those" girls!)
Again arms crossed it came out...
"You walk around telling me what to do, what not to do! Trying to make me be like you! Well, I'm not going to be like you!"
The best part about it was that it was said in a Scottish accent.
My precocious little madam was quoting movie lines at me!!
(Disney pixar's Brave in this case, good movie and worth watching if you haven't seen it, I may or may not have cried...)
Big deep breath and try and stifle a giggle...
Managed to get her into the shower and all was relatively normal for the restore the night.
It's now 11pm and I'm thinking about how I would have loved to reply to the whole situation had she been able to understand exactly what I was saying"
"No baby girl. I don't want you to be like me.
I want you to be BETTER than me.
All any parent ever wants for their child is to not develop the same flaws and weaknesses that have held or inhibited their own lives or character.
I don't want you to be perfect.
Perfect is overrated.
I just want you to be a better person than I am.
I want you to learn from my mistakes although I know that you will have to make some of your own to find your own way in life.
Right now I tell you what to do and what not to do because I have your best interests at heart.
I love you and I'm doing the best I can. One day I won't be here to make decisions for you. You will have to do it on your own and I want to make sure you are ready for that.
Now please hop in the shower and wash the dirt off your face"
The funniest thing is I remember saying the same thing to my mum as a teenager (without the accent...although that would have been awesome in hindsight!)
It's going to a long road but at least if she sticks with the accents there are career options out there for her.