Sweet Home New Mexico: Small children have big personalities

My husband and I have been blessed with three great kids. My oldest, my six year old son, is a complete joy. He was an angel baby, an angel toddler and has turned into a thoughtful, loving, responsible 6-year-old boy.

My second child was my first girl, and she is 4. They are just eighteen months apart, so the first year of her life is kind of a blur, honestly. While she is my precious girl, she definitely has her own idea about the way life should go and specifically about the way her life should go. I’m learning a little more every day how to parent her, and learning the most important principle of picking my battles. I don’t want to crush her creative little spirit. I just want to help that spirit operate within the confines of appropriateness, is all. I choose to battle her on the important things, and I am learning not to sweat the small stuff.

Then there’s my baby. She turned 2 years old this week and is embracing the stigma that comes with her age. While my 4-year-old has provided her own set of parenting challenges, she never colored on my walls or my carpet, and I don’t ever remember me asking her to do something where she outright told me ‘no.’ My baby is a different child altogether. She can melt my heart and then make me have to put myself in my own timeout, almost within the same moment. I’m not exactly sure what to do with her at least half the time. Nonetheless, I am thankful for the chance to love her and raise her, no matter what.

I believe all three of my kids came to this earth with the personalities they were meant to have. Some kids, like my little boy, come with easygoing, eager-to-please personalities. Some, like my 4-year-old, come with wild, carefree, creative personalities. And then, some like my baby, come with personalities I’m certain they possess to teach us things about ourselves more than anything else. I look forward to seeing what kind of adults they will become, and I can only hope that we are doing right by them right now. In some ways, I want them to stay little forever, but there is a part of me that can’t wait for the day when they are grown with families of their own so I can tell them their children are acting just like they did as kids. I hear that a great deal from my mom when she visits us, and there is a certain tone of sweet satisfaction in her voice when she says it as she leaves me to deal with whatever meltdown we are having at the moment. Ah, parenthood.