I’ve always been a little bit of a perfectionist. When I was not much older than BE, I remember deciding to do a homework assignment in block letters. It took a long time to write it this way, but I was stubborn – every letter had to be a block letter and I wasn’t satisfied with anything less. A few years later, my class made piñatas as part of a unit on Mexico. The fringes on my piñata had to be perfectly aligned, and needless to say, I was the last student done.
BE, on the other hand, couldn’t be more different. She’s more carefree (and sometimes careless) and isn’t concerned at all about uniformity. But, the other day, I discovered she may have a little bit of conscientiousness. She was eating M&Ms and she had to organize them all by color before she ate them.
Now, I don’t hope that she will become just like me, and I have no desire to change her, but I really wanted to use that moment to see something of myself in her. The way biological parents see a little bit of themselves in their children’s mannerisms, tone of voice, or habits. I hung onto that image of her organizing her candy in the hopes that it meant there was some connection between us.
I think BE feels like this sometimes too. Every since she was two, BE has been a big fan of Hello Kitty. When I was BE’s age, Hello Kitty wasn’t at the top of my favorite toys list, but I did have a Hello Kitty jewelry box that was given to me as gift. When I told BE about this, she got really excited and said, “you liked Hello Kitty too!” I said that I did like Hello Kitty, just not as much as her. Actually, I’m not sure anyone likes Hello Kitty as much as BE.
I hope that in a few years, we’ll have more to rely on when it comes to our mother/daughter relationship. As we get to know each other better, maybe we will see more of ourselves in each other.