May 17, 2011

The tale of the Un-Princess Mom and the Very Princess Daughter

Of all the things I wanted to be growing up, I wanted to be a mother...of three boys. Never did it cross my mind that I would ever have a girl. I was the girl that played with dolls, but never combed their hair or dressed them in dresses. Nope it was always shorts and a shirt. While my friends embraced their femininity, I found it hard to fit in that way. I was a tom boy of sorts. Sarge would tease that I was the little boy he always wanted.  I hung out with him in the garage more than in the kitchen with Mami.  Don't get me wrong, I sometimes enjoyed being a girly girl, but for the most part I embraced competition, sports, and friendships with boys. While I could be friends with other girls I somehow found myself more at ease chatting with the boys about sports.  Then came the teenage years and I found my femininity and love of fashion, but it was a long time coming.

So here I am with a two- year old daughter who's closet looks like Pepto-Bismal exploded in there. Her shoe collection resembles that of Carrie Bradshaw's on Sex in the City. When she wakes up she wants her hair brushed and to be made "pretty". She is attracted to all kinds of baubles, necklaces, and tiaras. Anything decorated with a Disney Princess theme is to be obsessed over admired and appreciated. She demands wants to be put in dresses on a daily basis. I have no idea how to relate!

 Maybe the reason I really had a hard time accepting having a daughter is that I know what kind of pressures a girl goes through. If your tough and ambitious and prefer jeans over a dress you are viewed as less feminine. On the opposite end of the spectrum, having the "Woe is me, someone come save me" attitude and being very feminine and "princess like" is viewed as weak and helpless. Being a girl is not easy and that is why I REALLY didn't want a girl. So what am I to do now that I have a girl and she is all things I definitely was not? 

While I don't mind indulging in her very feminine side I also want to open up other ideas to her, like sports and academics. I found that encouraging her to be who she is and showing her that not everyone can be a "Princess" all the time can be the way to relate to her.  I encourage her to try sports, run with her brother, rough house.  I can't help but smile when her brother picks on her and she beats the crap out of him  defends herself.

I want her to grew up knowing this: Beauty is in everything and a girl can gain attention not by what she looks like outwardly but what is in her heart and actions. You will always be a girl, but what you do with that knowledge is up to you.

Do you relate to your daughter?  How do you encourage her to go beyond the stereotypes of a woman?

Great website to visit if you have a girl :  7 wonderlicious

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