This is more of a journal entry for posterity sake than an entertaining blog entry. Skip at will.
My daughter is three. She is so much fun to be around because she is so intelligent and conversant. Her mind’s capabilities far outperform her verbal skills to the point that she often gets hung up in the middle of her complex thoughts. She makes compound sentences and tells complex stories. I watch her struggle for words she doesn’t yet know and then circumlocates the concept with the words she can say.
“Dad, the pink pencil is on…….top of that……..brown thing………on top of…….the fire place.” (the mantle).
Often times I intentionally ask her hard questions that make her use a word she doesn’t know. As soon as she gets to the word and starts to grasp for it, I’ll give it to her. She won’t forget it. I’ll ask her to do things that are hard, to see how she figures it out. “Sweetie, can you go give these two books to mommy?” One of the books was an eight pound law school case book. She is so determined to be useful and be a good helper. She looked around and found an empty shopping sack, but the books in it, slung it over her shoulder like a purse and marched upstairs to compete the task.
She is all girl too. She was born with an innate love of pink, ballerinas and makeup. Even at 20 months she was sneaking into makeup and putting it on. She just identifies with her mother and knows she’s a girl. She HATES it when I play with her in a rough house way. I’ve only been a dad to two rowdy boys so for me, playing with my daughter is a learning experience. My boys loved it when I chased them around the house like an angry bear, tickling them when I’d catch them. For her, chasing her like a bear is an exercise in sheer terror. At first, and for far too long after wards, I would laugh like crazy at how freaked out she’d get. She’d get over her panic and yell at me: “Stop that Daddy, I don’t like that!” I can’t throw her in the air or wrestle with her, or do any of that boy stuff with her. She likes to dance instead. So finally, just the other night, I picked her up and we waltzed around the living room, doing dips and spins. The whole time she was grinning from ear to ear. My wife said, “THAT’s how you play with little girls!” It finally dawned on me. Dad, you’ve been doing it all wrong.
She HATES to be interrupted. She HATES it when her brothers overpower her or commandeer the game or make up the rules she didn’t like, or step on her toes. Watch out, you will hear about it. I love to see her feisty side. Although it might make for more difficult parenting, it makes me think she’ll be more self-reliant, more self-protective, less likely to be swayed or misled by the bad in this world.