Ever since I can remember, I have wanted to instill in my kids the fact that they don’t need to always conform to what others expect. I want them to feel like they can blaze their own path to whatever they want to achieve in their lives. And, most of all, I want them to live their life without limiting themselves because they are worried about what other people think.
At almost-five years, I worry that maybe that lesson isn’t sinking in. I worry when my kids cling to me at preschool in the morning rather than racing off to join their friends. I worry when they don’t like my idea of showing everyone their uvula when they have to bring something that starts with the letter U for show and tell. I want to shout out to them, “Don’t do what everyone else does! Be different! People will respect you for being an individual!” But then, I look into their young, innocent eyes and I acquiesce by grabbing the umbrella and stuffed unicorn. I guess, they’re not ready for uvulas quite yet.
But then, on other days, I am blown away by the paths that Swee’Pea and TheMonk choose to blaze. One day I’m encouraging them to be leaders – to do their own thing without a thought of what they look like or what others will think – and the next day, I walk into our play room and find TheMonk looking like this:
Yep. They’re gonna be just fine.