Anyone who knows me, knows how obsessed I am with being a mother. Everything about my child is amazing to me....and she continues to evolve daily. When I found out that I was going to become a mom, I really had no plan other than to raise a creative, free spirited individual. But perhaps that is because I am a free spirit....or maybe not.
I am most definitely a free spirit, which is why my parents call me a "black butterfly". But I haven't always been that way. I actually grew up extremely self conscious. My parents did a wonderful job, but I definitely had a lot of rules growing up. When you pair a strict household, with the lack of ability to express myself when I was in school, It really left me with no other way to be besides self conscious. When I met my husband in high school, I thought he was absolutely insane. He grew up in a strict environment as well, but the difference between him and I is that he rebelled...I did not. I grew up very um....self aware. He could care less about what anyone had to say about anything that he did. We are both the results of growing up, having too many restrictions put on us. This, combined with the lack of creativity allowed in the school systems has the potential to set the tone for a person's entire life. This is why I chose differently for my child.
As often as people give me the "side-eye" when Eliana calls my husband by his first name, or when she tells a stranger not to touch her, I always receive compliments on how much of an amazing child I am raising. People ask me for parenting advice, but I really don't do anything spectacular. I just let my child be herself. It is really that simple. I never make her feel wrong for her points of view. I nurture her creativity, and I teach her to respect everyone....but self respect is top priority. Most importantly, she is taught to love herself. As a result of this, I have a very smart, compassionate, creative, free beautiful spirit that I get to spend everyday of my life with. One thing that I often consider is the fact that I am not raising her to be a child. Eliana is going to spend the majority of her life as an adult. so it is important for me to nurture her spirit, rather than attempt to keep her "in a child's place".