Monday, November 30, 2015

This Girl

This girl brings me so much joy. Part of it is her age. 
Though two can be challenging, it's also a wonder to watch her discover the world.

Part of it is simply her. Immersed in the world of little boys for over five years before she arrived, maybe that's why I notice the gender differences. While she can wrestle and holler with the boys, she also has this girly attitude that fascinates me. 

It's more than just stereotypical female characteristics. All three of my kids possess qualities that can be generally assigned to the opposite gender. 

Maybe it's because I'm aware of the challenges that this little girl is going to face because she's a female. It's been on my mind quite a bit this semester due to conversations I've had with female students and peers.

I was recently reminded of an article I read that recommended reminding our little girls that they are pretty when they are active - not just when they are dressed up. I had just put a dress on H. She looked down at herself and exclaimed, "I'm pretty." 

I said, "Yep. You sure are. You're also pretty when you run. Really fast."

She smiled as we talked about other moments when she's pretty.

She can now tell you when she's pretty: when she runs (she pumps her arms in place), when she laughs (including big laughs), and even when she's sad.

Maybe in a decade she'll remember this conversation when there's pressure to look a certain way.
Maybe it'll help us have more conversations about being female in this world.

I'm looking forward to conversations with this girl as she is navigating the world.

And maybe just maybe I'll get another runner out of the bunch.

1 comment:

April Maskiewicz said...

My dad always inspired me the way you are inspiring your "little girl". It can make a huge different empowering her forever!