Two of the many things I want for my children is for them to feel comfortable with who they are and for them to learn on their own from their mistakes. Like most things in life, we have rules, but we can't dictate every inch of their lives.
GG has been playing around with clothing trying to find what styles she likes and what colors suit her best. She knows that shorts no bigger than a pair of underwear are not allowed, but if I pick out her clothes every day, how is she going to figure out how to express herself?
Little Dude and his hair seem to be a big issue for most people, but not so much for me. His hair is now a few inches past his shoulder. He refuses to get it cut and with the husband having the longest hair in the house, how can I argue with the kid? Part of it, I'm sure, is due to the fact that this kid is more stubborn than any mule out there, but it's hair.
Do I get frustrated when people call him a girl even though most of his clothing consists of trucks, monsters and other boy things/colors? Of course. Sometimes I let it go, sometimes I speak up. We were recently at a carnival and an employee tried to get us "ladies" to play his game. I ignored him because I didn't want to waste money on games we would never win, but he called out to us ladies every time we walked past his booth. Finally I told him we weren't playing his game because he kept calling my son a girl. There is no handbook stating all boys have to have short hair and if you're not sure, don't assume.
Learning from mistakes - I am always there to help, but if I swoop in every time to try and fix a problem, my kids will never learn how to do it on their own. Sometimes I think people look at me as the mom who doesn't care or doesn't have rules. Do I get lazy? Of course I do. We all have those days. But spending who knows how long arguing with my son over his wanting to wear snow boots on a walk to a local yogurt place on a 80+ degree day is not worth my time. We would never get out the door! And I'm pretty sure by the time we got to the yogurt shop, Little Dude realize his choice of footwear was not a wise one.
I know I am not the perfect parent and I will never claim to be, but I hope my children learn that it's ok to express who they are, within reason of course, and that's it's also ok to fall down 7 times as long as they get back up 8.
Until next time...