Yesterday I watched my daughter practice being a few things. First, she made coffee for herself and one of her babies. Then, she practiced being a doctor with her pretend kit. She tried to hear my heart beat, but it didn’t work for her. So she moved on and played some music. She did all these things with enthusiasm, excitement, and curiosity.
As a parent, it doesn’t take long to sense the competitive world our own kiddos are entering. My daughter is only two, and people have already asked me my plans for her education and extracurricular involvement. They have recommended programs, some extremely competitive and expensive. It is all very well-meaning, and I definitely check it out right away. Yet there is a lingering feeling of caution as I begin to traipse down this road. I know that for a child to be the best at certain things they have to start at an early age. It’s just that, I don’t want to push my daughter to be the best, or even teach her the idea that she might be better than others. Especially at this young age. I want her to love being herself, but not because she is good at something or prettier than others. Simply because she is Lillian, and we love her just as she is. As she starts to find her abilities and talents, I hope I am able to allow her the freedom to try new things and let go of activities that she does not want to do, all the while encouraging her to push herself and her limits. But above all, I want this little girl to grow up to know that no matter how many times she has failed or achieved, she is unconditionally loved by God and her parents love her SO much without any merit. This list simply represents my hopes for her as she grows up. I want her to achieve much, I just don’t ever want her to lose herself along the way, push friends and loved ones aside to climb the ladder, or lose sight of how much God loves her in this often difficult and competitive world.