Have you ever noticed the phenomenon that certain qualities and attributes tend to skip generations? I started thinking about this after a comment my oldest daughter made about her daughter, our Princess Granddaughter, E. My oldest daughter is an articulate, intelligent, woman who is a whiz with numbers, budgeting and finance. Except for extreme intelligence (*cough*), these are qualities she did NOT inherit from me.
When she was a little girl K did not enjoy having her hair styled or dressing up in frilly dresses. She was totally late to the party when it came to boys, clothes, and the latest hairstyle. Sixth grade was torture and misery for her because of this. She was the outsider.
E, at 3 1/2, is just the opposite. She loves to have her hair and nails done. Her first pedicure was when she was 1 1/2. You know the song from the musical, "Annie", "You're not fully dressed without a smile"? Well, E's motto is that you're not fully dressed without nail polish. She loves having her Auntie Ke (daughter #2) polish her nails, put on makeup, and brush and braid her hair. Auntie Ke is her personal esthetician. E loves butterflies, ponies, fairies and princesses. Her short term goal is to be a ballerina (or a soccer player - she's a girl of the 21st millenium, after all).
I often chuckle as I observe K trying to figure out how E is turning out this way. When K buys her clothes they're almost always jeans and t's from Old Navy. She encourages E to be independent and discourages baby-ish behavior. As E's grandmother I tend to take the long-term view. No one acts like a baby forever and early childhood is over before you know it. Let kids be kids as long as possible. They're adults soon enough.
More and more I wish my own mother was still here. I remember phone conversations we'd have when my daughters were teenagers. She'd die laughing while I complained about the fights I was having with the girls over boys, dating and clothes and remind me that her * "mother's' curse" was coming true. I know that it won't be long before I'm having these same conversations with my daughter. The thought is conforting, somehow. You know, the more things change, the more they stay the same...
E looks like she might turn out to be her mother's nightmare. I'm just loving this.
* Mother's Curse: "I hope your kid turns out just like you."