Delight in your delight....

"I like Laurel," M told me the other day, "Not just because she's our kid, but she's fun and interesting to hang out with."

I thought about that and about what people told me having children was like before I had my own. You'll fall in love with them, they said, and I get that, like sometimes when I go into her room to check on her at night and she's sleeping peacefully, clutching whatever stuffed animal has become her best friend this week. It's like stomach-flipping, heart-fluttering love-at-the-sight when I see those closed eyes, blond hair spilling across her pillow.

Or maybe it's just gratitude that the darn kid finally went to sleep. (Oh, the endless bedtime rituals of a potty-training toddler. Sigh.)

Nah, it's gotta be love. I feel fiercely protective of her, and worried that she'll die or get hurt in a way that I don't worry about other people in my life. Some of that must be biology, because it feels visceral. Not based in logic. Logic helps me manage those fears, but they rise from somewhere deep within me.

The neighbor bought her a present. Little plastic Disney princess dolls with changeable outfits. Laurel could not have been more pleased to receive a present like this. She cradled them and worked endlessly to figure out how to take the clothes on and off herself. She played for hours with them tonight, entertaining herself with a complicated storyline that involved a swimming pool made out of sauce pot, a tea party, and the bathtub. Normally, I'm not that into Disney princesses, and M hates them, but I couldn't help but be delighted in Laurel's delight.

Laurel isn't going to be just like us. I know we'll influence her as her parents, and that we'll naturally be selective in the kinds of experiences she gets to have while under our supervision, but we can't make her be like M & K. And despite that, we can still like her and enjoy her company, and maybe now and again, get excited about something totally different, just because she likes it.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Love it.