I recently attended a Baby Shower where guests were asked to share words of advice for the soon-to-be parents: Always___, Never___ and Don’t Forget___. Most answers were poignant, some cheeky, but one in particular stood out. The guidance? “Never compare your child to someone else. Let them be an individual.” I thought to myself, yes of course, great advice. And then I thought, wait…I do this all the time.
The moment I found out I was having a girl, I was convinced she would be my “mini me”. I don’t know why, but I fully expected her to come out of the womb looking exactly like me. In reality? She is a clone of my husband. In her 2.5 years, I can count on my hand the number of times someone has said “She looks just like you!”. I’ve lost track the number of times someone has said, “She’s just like her Daddy!”. She is long and lean and measures off the charts, most recently clocking in the 98th percentile for height (I’m 5’2”, my husband is over 6’). She has curly blonde hair (yep, just like her Daddy did) and they share an identical blue-gray (with a hint of green) eye color. She even thinks like my husband: thoughtful and particular in her choices whereas I can be a bit…hasty.
Last weekend we visited family in Pittsburgh. As we sat around the dinner table, happily catching up, my toddler daughter piped in and asked: “Would anyone like some more wine?”. The group turned and laughed, but in that moment I finally saw it: ME!! (obviously said in my best Elle Woods voice.) She’s a spirited little chatterbox eager to spread joy and keep the party going – personality traits I’m thrilled to pass on to her.
So while I will always encourage her individuality – I also don’t mind seeing these familiar glimpses of myself and my husband in her. I hope she only gets the best of us to build upon the best of her.
P.S. Happy Mother’s Day to all the Moms, Soon-To-Be Moms and those who selflessly love like a Mom. Remember: “There’s no way to be a perfect mother, and a million ways to be a good one.”