Being a momma has been the best experience I could have ever asked for in life. Every day is a new adventure; for real, though, I never know what’s gonna happen next.
For the past few months, Hadley has been pretty much everyone but herself. Some days she’s Daniel Tiger, others she’s Catboy (from PJ Masks) and some days she’s someone different every hour. I don’t know if this is the case for all two year olds, but it sure is for mine!
Now, in no way does it upset me that my child is using her imagination. That’s something I strongly encourage. But there is a small part of me, deep down inside, that gets a little sad when I accidentally call her by name and get a not so nice “I’M NOT HADLEY!”.
After quickly correcting myself, all is right in the world again and life goes on. I guess the part that gets to me is just the fact that my baby is growing up and has gained the ability to think for herself and make her own decisions.
Where I used to pick out her outfits and dress her, she now can grab her own clothes and do it herself. Where I used to plan out her meals and feed her with a spoon, she now tells me specifically what she wants and feeds herself. She even tells me how she wants her sandwiches cut, for Pete’s sake!
When she’s being someone else, normally that means I’m an accompanying character as well. If she’s Daniel Tiger, then of course I’m Katerina Kittycat. If she’s Nemo, I’m Dory. And (my favorite) if she’s Judy Hopps, I’m Nick Wilde. (If you haven’t seen Zootopia, you must.)
But sometimes, every few days (or sometimes even a a whole week goes by), I’ll call “Daniel?” or the name of whoever she may be, and I’ll get the most heartwarming response.
She’ll come up to me, point to herself and say, “I’m Hadley! I’m Hadley and you’re Mommy!”
This may not seem like a big deal. But to me, it’s almost like she’s giving me a little reminder. It’s like she’s saying, “I’m Hadley. I’m still your little girl. And wherever I go and whoever I decide to be in life, you’ll always be my mom.”
And sure enough, she’ll run off again, off to become some other character, some other hero; whatever her imagination brings her to be. But I know, deep down, she’ll always be my Hadley.
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