Tuesday, January 05, 2010

She's a rainbow...

and she loves the peaceful life
Our newly turned three year old was loved on thoroughly last week at my mom's by our extended family. About every five minutes one of her older cousins would look at her and say, "She is so cute!" My sentiments exactly. She thoroughly enjoyed every moment of our family togetherness.Her heart was clearly full to bursting with love for our family, but she also needed many reassuring cuddles and snuggles from me. She would whisper to me, "I want to go home 'cause there's too many peoples here." Or, "I miss my home. I don't want to live here forever."

Sometimes raising my little Clementine is feels like getting a chance to parent myself. She generally shy, but is a total goof ball when she is relaxed and comfortable. She is a sensitive sweetheart that loves everyone, she digs her feet in when she doesn't get her way and she almost totally shuts down when she's overwhelmed. Her heart is big and when she is happy she is very very happy and when she is sad she is very very sad, when she is angry she is very very angry. She feels everything strongly, deeply--like me.

There is no place I would have rather been then with my mom and sisters last week, but I too had moment of feeling like there were too many peoples there. All people that I love though and as an adult I now know how to manage my need for quiet, introverted moments or even put those moments on hold temporarily for other kinds of nourishment. Clementine is just still very little and does not yet know how to balance those things. Getting her to take a quiet rests or a naps was nearly impossible that week, but she needed them and they clearly brought her relief.
I am so totally different from Magpie and my hubby that it is nice to have a familiar face around here. I definitely have insight into Clementine's inner workings, but will that make it easier to parent her? Or harder? I don't want to assume or put things are her that are really my issues, but I do want to use the insight I've gained about myself to help her navigate and move past the places she gets stuck. I often feel like I am just learning how to get around here myself so how will I help her find her way?

I intentionally remind myself that regardless of our similarities she is different and her life is different too and I must also step back just enough to let her flourish...especially during this year of 3 which is like adolescence only smaller and possibly more neurotic.

I am thankful for my husband who seems to bring out just the right mix of brave, goofy and a touch of suck it up in all of us. I am thankful that Clementine will not endure the stares of strangers and hushed whispers of other children like I did at her age. My hope is that my shy girl will discover more safe places & people in the world to be herself and to grow into herself then I did when I was that little. I think being surrounded by too many peoples that all love her is a good place to start.


Catherine said...

This is gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous.

Karen said...

I was noticing how much more sure footed she was in deciding when she wanted all those too many peoples and when she wanted only herself or you...and dealing with all those transitions very nicely, even for being such a little Clementine.