I can’t know what my girls are going to do in every situation. I like to think that I know my girls well enough that I will be able to predict how they will react in a situation. But I have learned that my predictions of my girls’ behavior are actually guesses, and many times those guesses are wrong.
My Kids Surprise Me
The first time it happened was last year. My oldest girl was trying out for a play at our church. After she auditioned for her part, she opened the audition room door, walked over to her little sister and asked her if she wanted to audition for a solo part. I let them converse while I stood back and watched.
Obviously my little girl will not do this. She’s so quiet.
But no, I was wrong. My little girl went in and sang a song for three adults, and ended up getting a solo. Who is this kid? I thought. I assumed my little one wouldn’t sing in front of anyone because of her tendency to be cautious in new situations. I didn’t realize that her love for singing was much stronger than bashfulness.
How Well Do I Know My Girls?
I immediately felt guilty for not knowing my girl well enough. How could I not know she would want to sing in front of people?
It happened again with my oldest a few months later when we went to an event with a few families we didn’t know very well. I thought for sure that my outgoing, independent, oldest girl would find someone at the event and make friends quickly. She has always been the talkative one at school.
But not on that day. She stayed close to my side the whole event. I never thought of my oldest as shy, but that day, I did. Who is this kid?
Are They Just Growing Up?
I have these kids completely figured out, and then a few days later they do something that throws me completely off.
I, of course, suspect it’s because I don’t spend enough time with my children. It’s because I don’t talk to them enough. It’s because I work full-time out of the home. Of course. But really, it’s just because they’re growing. My sweet girls are learning the ways of the world. They are learning the things they like and dislike, the things they feel comfortable with or uncomfortable with. Each situation will be just a little bit new until they figure out exactly who they are.
I can’t believe I’m saying this. It all happens so fast. Just one song, and suddenly my girl is singing in front of a large(ish) audience. Just one situation, and suddenly my girl is learning the pains of awkward conversation.
These who is this kid moments tend to leave me mentally scrambling. My brain yells at me, Uh hello? What’s happening? I thought this kid loved people! Why isn’t she talking to anyone! I want to ask all the questions my brain is yelling at me. What made you sing for the audition? Are you embarrassed to sing? Did someone pressure you to sing? Why aren’t you talking to anyone? Did someone make you feel bad? And so on and so on.
But I have to tell myself to stay cool. Stay calm. No interrogations will happen today. Stay cool.