I’ve heard parents say that one of the most wonderful things about having a child is that you get to see the world through their eyes. And as the overly proud mother of an 18-month-old girl, I would have to agree. I am amazed every day by the little things that make Mini Me smile.
Take bubbles, for instance. Whenever we go outside to blow bubbles, E laughs so hard that she nearly loses her breath. She is equally entertained by spelling. Yes, spelling her name sends her into a fit of giggles every time.
One thing that everyone forgets to mention, though, is that you get to see yourself through your child’s eyes as well. Kids are mimics. E doesn’t miss a thing. When she first learned to walk, she would go into my mother’s kitchen and try to turn on the oven. It took me two days to realize that she was preheating the oven as she had seen me do at night when we came home.
E can flip the light switches, use the phone, and operate the TV remote. She carries a purse, and can use the car remote to unlock the door.
In the past few weeks, I’ve noticed that her habits are starting to reflect mine. And I can’t say that I always like what I see. Here are a few examples.
The Multitasker: If you ever read my entry “As the Mobile Turns,” you know that I’m a serious multitasker, often to my own detriment. I’ve seen E balance a baby doll on one hip while holding a purse and/or a cell phone as she is digging in her toy box. How many times have I made a mad dash to the car while carrying E, a diaper bag, a purse, and God knows what else? And then I have to balance it all while unlocking the car door. It’s a miracle I haven’t broken my neck or hers.
The Driver. E went to a birthday party at Showbiz, I mean Chuck E. Cheese, last weekend. While piloting the kiddie car with a plastic Chuck E. as a passenger, my little roadster fished around in the back seat, pushed buttons on the console, and took her hands off of the steering wheel to pick up lint off the car’s floor. “Keep your eyes on the road, little one, “ I laughed. “You’re supposed to be driving.” Shoot, who was I to talk? I don’t think that I’ve ever picked up objects off of the car floors, but the other two actions were all me.
The Prima Donna. If I wake up without knowing what I’m going to wear to work, I am setting myself up for a painfully messy morning routine. I don’t think that my brain is capable of making any decisions unless I’ve been up for at least two hours, and my indecision slows me down. I’ll start with a shirt and pants. Then change the pants for a skirt, then change the shirt for a sweater, and then the skirt goes to either the original pants or another skirt. And the jewelry changes too. After I’ve put something together, I’ll stand in the mirror, huff because I hate what I’m wearing, and return to the closet for something else.
E only had to see this once. Now after I get her dressed, she stands in my bedroom in front of the floor-length mirror. I’ve watched as she opens my jewelry drawer, grabs a necklace, puts it on, and then replaces it to try another.
I work on these habits now, I tell myself. Shoot, I don’t like these things about myself, so why should I let my kid do them? Because it’s cute. Everything my baby does is adorable because I am under her spell. I will be kicking myself in about 13 years when I have to drag a picky teen to the mall for new school clothes. But, that is the least of my worries now. If all I have to contend with is a picky shopper, then I’m doing pretty good. After all, I didn’t turn out all that bad.