“What’s your problem with Toddlers and Tiaras?” the comment on a blog asked. As if I could pick just one?
Well, OK, I’ll try. Those gussied up little girls with their go go juice (yes, it’s a real thing, no, you don’t want to know) don’t appear to be children so much as dolls, made up by mothers who are trying to recreate themselves — or the childhood dreams anyway — in their daughters.
And it isn’t just the women who are trashing up their toddlers.
It’s every woman who swoons at the sonogram at the sight of the little girl parts, already planning her prom and her wedding. She will be Mini Me, the spitting image, the next generation . . .
On behalf of daughters of mothers everywhere, let me just say go ahead and call that a girl’s worst nightmare.
I don’t imagine my daughter wanting to be me. Why should she? I don’t want to be MY mother! No offense to the woman who brought me into this world, but we are opposites in so many ways. I’m left-brain. She’s right. I excelled in the arts. She in the sciences. She’s a nurse practitioner. I think most bodily functions and secretions are “icky.” I’d go on but why? She is her. I am me.
And my daughter is another creature entirely, a little girl who has already developed her preference for twirly, glittery and sparkly despite her mother’s lack of hair and face nearly devoid of make-up. She is a child who can build massive and complicated towers out of paper cups stacked precariously upon one another. I struggle to judge whether “that much” leftover chili will fit in “that” size plastic container. She would eat bacon by the pound if I’d let her, and I’m a vegetarian.
She’s quiet where I am loud and loud where I am quiet. She’s self-assured where I’m most anxious and kindest where I am most selfish.
She is not me. She will never be me.
And thank goodness. She’s got a chance to be something even better: HERSELF!!
PS: The shirt she’s wearing above, When I Grow Up, I Want to Be Me, was given to me by the folks at Off Our Chests. Although seeing it on her inspired me to write this post, I did not otherwise gain from the relationship with the company. But they are super cool if you want to go check them out.
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