When I used to imagine having a child, I wondered if they would be anything like me. Would they be shy and quiet as I was, keeping to themselves until called upon? It wasn't until I attended college and took Speech 101 that I came out of my shell (that was a nightmare by the way). Would they use their imagination and pretend they existed in their own world? My imagination as a child was so great that I would turn my dad's shoes into a Barbie limousine. Would they follow instead of lead? A good leader takes a lot of character, and an honest one would make me proud. Would they love to learn as I always have? Oh I wished and wished and wished for them to love learning. Having children is a roll of the dice, you really never know what you're going to get.
Fast forward to today, and two months before my child turns 4 years old. Lily seems much older in my eyes than her age. Though she is initially shy and quiet, she's no wallflower. She takes her time to analyze people and her environment, and when she feels ready she takes over a room. Don't let that little face fool you, she has tricks up her sleeves.
Her imagination would stump mine on many levels, and she loves super heroes and underdogs versus princesses any day. She prefers to be the savior, and being the damsel in distress does not appeal to her. She's a born leader, and feels comfortable leading kids much older than herself (leaving me to wonder how she does it). She loves to question you, and may even lead you to doubt yourself. She's a pretty smart cookie, and proves me wrong when I underestimate her...which I've learned not to do by now.
She's probably the most sympathetic person you'll meet. She worries when babies cry, and will request that I pick them up (this is awkward when in public and I have no idea who the baby is). She cries if you do, gives hugs when she knows something is wrong, tells you how much she loves you, reminds you she missed you, and will kiss any wound you have. If there is such a things as an old soul, I feel she may have one. She's mature beyond her years, and can make me feel like the child at times. Playfully hitting her with a pillow will get me a "don't hit me, I'm your best friend!" and I instantly feel guilty.
As her 4th birthday approaches, I realize a few things. This year marks the end of her toddler stage, she'll be attending school next year. She's so prepared for school that she can't wait to meet her teacher. She's getting a haircut this weekend, so we're removing six inches of baby hair. She has an opinion about everything, but her only concern is whether or not she'll still look like a super hero after her haircut (3 year old problems).
Ultimately, I could never have imagined the child I was blessed with. She's just one very happy little girl...everything else is just icing on the cake.