I think sometimes as parents we have an idea of what we want our kids to do or be. I know a lot of parents introduce new things to their children to see what they like...what really gets them excited...and we "hope" it's something we also enjoyed as a kid. Hear me out...
Growing up, I've always played softball. I lived it and breathed it. From Tball to Highschool I was always playing. It was my sport. The smell of the fresh cut grass, hamburgers grilling near the consession, uniform tan lines...even the taste of dirt as it finds its' way into your mouth from sliding into home. This was what I grew up doing.
When Constance turned three I couldn't wait to sign her up for Tball. I just knew she would love it just like I did! This is the same girl that wouldn't wear anything other than dresses until she was 4...The first year she played she just kicked at the dirt a little bit and watched butterflies. It was pretty cute watching her play as it is every Tball league. She didn't really show interest but seemed to like it okay. She even tried to wear her high heels to practice in! <3
The second year of Tball was a different story. She was less than thrilled but agreed to give it another go. During one of the very first practices she was placed on the pitcher's mound and she was the one to retrieve the ball every time it left the T stand. My eyes were LIT just watching her! She was actually playing ball and she was pretty good too! She had a good throw and even started running and tagging girls to get them out. I was so ecstatic to watch her! Just a mere 10 minutes before practice was over, she ran off the pitcher's mound and through the dug out crying. I quickly get up and rush to her asking her if everything is okay and she simply replies, "It's too hard, I don't like this"...
My heart sank.
I told her, "You are doing so well and look like you were having fun"... She replies, "I don't want to play anymore"... I persuade her to go out to the outfield and finish out her practice and she did, even with a smile on her face.
She agreed to finish out the year because that's the right thing to do when you sign up for something. Some days she really enjoys it but mostly she doesn't care and would rather be doing something she really enjoys. (I'll get to that in just a minute).
My baby girl is as girly as it gets. She loves princesses and dresses and ballet and dancing and singing. She loves high heels, dressing up and cuddling animals. She's a lover. Her spirit is kind. She makes us smile daily and her laugh is contagious. Being the only girl you can bet I dressed her up and put flowers and bows in her hair everyday. I ate it up and she did too.
Constance loves to DANCE. Since the first day I put her in Ballet/Jazz/Tap last year she just beamed with joy. Since then, the studio closed down and so we tried out gymnastics. She was pretty fond of it but she really missed dancing.
I thought about having her play ball one more year to see if she still doesn't like it but it really got me thinking. Why would I deny her dancing but encourage softball? Of course I love watching her dance but I got it in my mind that she could do both! She could be girly but still a ball player! Right? Why would I make her do something she doesn't want to do? Just because it was something I really enjoyed as a kid? I think a lot of times as parents we are guilty of doing this even though we don't mean any harm by it, necessarily. . .
We really want our kids to enjoy the things we enjoyed. Sometimes they do and sometimes they don't. I'll continue to introduce her to different things and watch her try them out but I won't force her to do something she doesn't like (not for all cases obviously) but for instances such as this.
If you've ever met Constance, You'd know this right here is what really makes her soul happy <3
Dancing freely, taking pictures and dressing up. That's my girl right there! I love every ounce of you pretty girl! I can't wait for all of our adventures we will continue to have! I hope you always remain true to yourself and continue to do what inspires your heart!