It’s always been obvious to me that both nature and nurture play apart in who we are as individuals. But now, I have two little bodies that are hard evidence of the fact we are all born with a set of instincts and characteristics, but also gravitate toward the behavior of others.
I will always focus on letting my kids take the lead on their own pathways, within reason, and provide them with a lead when necessary. I will never force them to be something they are not or do something they do not want to do. ENCOURAGEMENT is powerful, but only to the extent that it is being received.
My youngest one, Reagan, has always taken an interest in the girliest of all girl things. Don’t get me wrong, I was ecstatic when we learned we were having a girl, and after raising a boy for 3 years, PINK was a breath of fresh air. I may be a little overwhelming in that department sometimes, but not to the extent that it gets in the way of her being her.
Last night was a small snapshot of “girls will be girls” but also reminded me that kids are ALWAYS watching. After Reagan insisted on getting her nails painted (not by talking, but by grabbing and pointing) she continued to frolic in my make-up, pretending to apply where necessary, and shuffle around in my hair products.
I want to make it clear that she will be forbidden from REAL make-up play until she has grown into more of a mature individual, understanding the true purpose of make-up and the concept that less is more, but I don’t think there is any harm in pretend play.
I try not to get to wrapped up in the gender identity and role behavior; kids need to focus on being kids. Whether my daughter continues on the route of being a tutu-wearing, girly-girl or turns out to be a mud-eating tomboy, I will love her just the same.