This post also appeared on MyBigJesus.com
My eldest child is a daughter. My daughter is not an athlete. I don’t consider this to be a reflection on her gender. I don’t consider this to be a reflection on her girlhood. I consider it to be a bit of laziness and a bit of clumsiness, combined with the fact that mom and dad and grandma and grandpa and everyone in her life have always done what she needed. She loves to dance and loves to run, but she is not very graceful. It’s endearing, truly.
My son however it is already running as soon as he learned to walk. He is climbing. He is jumping and shouting and being fast and crazy. The desire to be faster and stronger is so much more with the second child. I don’t think their differences are boy versus girl. I think their differences have more to do with the fact that my son has always wanted to catch up to my daughter. Maybe it’s just a second child thing.
Those things being said, I will fully support the habits, desires and interests of my kids. If EK wants to try out for every sports team her entire life, I’ll support it. If J never wants to do anything athletic in his life, I’ll support it. I want them to be well-rounded, but also happy. I’d love them to be musical and athletic and theatrical and academic and social and everything all at once… wouldn’t everyone like their kids to have talent out the wazoo and be gifted in anything they tried? But that just isn’t the most practical thing to expect of your child.
I know my kids aren’t old enough to have really shown us what their talents or interests are yet, but I’m preparing for it. I know it’s coming. And when it comes, we’ve got ten years at least of it being a huge part of our lives. I don’t want to be a mom who forces her kids into things they don’t care about, or makes them stick with what they started for several more years, even if they hate it. That being said, we won’t decide that our first piano lesson wasn’t what we thought and we can just quit. We also, won’t try one new thing every single year till high school graduation. That just gets too crazy. We will strive for a good balance, no over commitment, and the most fun and learning. Those are the priorities.
Now remind me of that in 5 years or so, okay?