With an empty paper towel roll over her left eye, peering through the long tube, Makenzie comes waltzing over to me exclaiming, “Mommy I am looking for a pirate ship”! I respond, “Wow you have an amazing imagination, baby girl”!
While Makenzie’s imagination is quite bright, it is certainly not limited to just playing out imaginary scenes with random items, be it trash or toys. Her imagination goes way beyond that and seems to include how she sees me, what she thinks of me, and even what she thinks my role is as her mother.
I can assure you that my baby girls’ imagination sees me as her personal chef; the one who is there to fix her meals on demand. And what is the use in eating what she just asked for, because I am totally equipped to keep preparing meals until she gets to something that she likes…for the day!
Her imagination has also convinced her that she has a live-in aesthetician. She has the time of her life as I bathe her, dry her off, clean her ears, and lotion her up, even massaging lotion onto her little feet like she paid for a pampering-day at the local spa.
I am quite positive she also considers me her personal fun-snatcher! She sees me as this character who seems to always be there to stop her when she is mid-mischief. Put your brother down Makenzie! Don’t reach on the kitchen counter Makenzie! Get out the snack Cabinet Makenzie!
She also believes I am her personal stylist. The way she swats shirt after shirt away, because she wants to wear whatever I didn’t pick out, is like something out of a movie chronicling the life of a spoiled rich brat. Let’s also add hair dresser to this list! Screams and tears as I comb through her beautiful curls make every wash day so special, haha. At the end of the drama, she always loves how pretty her hair is and admires herself in the mirror for about 30 seconds.
I am also convinced that in her mind I am her very own “water boy”, her snack carrier and go-getter, her bathroom attendant and private tail-wiper, her personal driver, private teacher, nose wiper, shoe tier, Netflix show selector, I mean I could go on and on and on!
That imagination is something else! ..but if I am totally being honest, in reality, I am all of those things and more to her. In her mind, I am this imaginary character just making her life so easy, but in real life I am putting in work to make all this happen and keep her alive day by day.
Even though I am raising my daughter to be able to do all these things on her own someday, I have to say that it is the most rewarding job to know that she sees me as the one that is supposed to do all of these things for her and she trusts me to do them without one ounce of worry. She literally lives like a bird. Matthew 6:26 talks about the birds in the air and how they basically get everything they need without doing the work for it. This is how our young children live….and quite honestly, as tiring as it is, this is the way it’s supposed to be. We unfortunately must be EVERYTHING to our babies and toddlers, because if we aren’t then who will be?
Everything about being a parent is all an opportunity. God entrusts our children to us and we get to do this amazing job called parenting. I will be the first to say that I often consider my children and what they have “stolen” from me (i.e. my time, career, freedom, etc). This is an ongoing struggle for me. However, literally coming to the end of this post, I am realizing how important it is for me to see my children in a more positive light and consider the opportunities they provide more than the losses. It really is a love-hate relationship. I hate that I have to be so many things, every day, all day. But at the same time, I love that I get to be so many things to my babies. To every parent, I pray God gives you the energy and passion you need so you can keep doing your best at allowing your young children to live like care-free birds!