When my daughter was 7 months old, the teacher in her infant room said to me one night at pickup, “Wow, she sure is stubborn!”
I remember being astounded. She was 7 months old. What did that even mean?
Five years later, we attended a conference with my daughter’s kindergarten teacher. After talking about her academics, her determination, her sense of humor and her refusal to ever back down, her teacher said: “Please stay in touch. I can’t wait to see what she is doing in 20 years!”
My daughter is bright, hard-working, always right, creative, independent and kind. She can be relentless, helpful, strong-willed and the ultimate rule-follower. She giggles, pushes, challenges and perseveres. She is the very best paradox at only seven and a half years.
I look at her and see so many possibilities. I truly believe she will be able to do anything she sets her sights on. She is, already, a force to be reckoned with.
But we are not raising her with a goal towards world domination. We are encouraging her to slow down, challenge herself, take responsibility for her actions and decisions. We are teaching her to speak her mind, and to keep opinions to herself, when appropriate. We work on being respectful and showing our appreciation.
Sometimes the lessons are natural. Other times, we butt heads and retreat. Apple, tree, and all that. There is forgiveness when needed and an endless supply of love.
Our plan is to raise a strong, confident, independent person, well equipped to handle whatever this world throws at her, through the upcoming (scary) teenage years and far beyond. We are supporting her, reigning her in when necessary, without ever breaking her tenacious spirit. Fingers crossed we are doing it right.
It certainly is possible that she will one day rule the world.
Or maybe she won’t.
Either way is fine by me.