Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Taking Sides

When my husband A proposed, we were on vacation in Antigua. He got down on one knee on the very first day, leaving me with a week on an almost deserted island, head spinning with details of our impending forever together. I remember thinking: Our children with be dark haired and brown eyed! We both were. I had no doubt, and it was exciting to "know" yet another previous "unknown".

When I was pregnant, A would whisper to me at night about our daughter's curly hair. "She'll have hair just like yours!" he said. And I believed him, imagining little ringlets that I would know just what to do with (unlike my straight haired mother).

Sure enough, Chloe entered the world with a head full of raven locks, which started out black like A's but eventually settled in lighter than both of ours, an ashen brown with blonde flecks. But her hair was straight, and continues to be, with a lone stubborn wave on the nape of her neck. I still don't know what to do with her hair, except to brush it, and unlike my own it settles naturally after being raked over, needing little extra attention.

Her eyes were most startling. They are huge and blue. "They'll change," everyone told me, as they would look to me and my husband in confusion as we stared back behind brown eyes. But they won't. She is nearing two and they are a dark blue with brown rings around the pupil, a small homage to her parents. And they are gorgeous, surrounded by lush dark lashes. They are alluring and flirtatious and demanding and will surely be the downfall of many suitors.

So she looks much unlike me and while she is a softer looking spin off of A, she is not an exact replica. She is her own person, who sometimes looks more like my blue eyed friend Gail when she holds her than like either of us. So I find myself identifying other ways that she resembles us, just to make sense of this blue eyed beauty.

And there are many. Watching her personality develop has been perhaps the most miraculous thing about being a parent. While she has created her very own harmony of both nature and nurture, she manifests many qualities that are "just like us". And while I revel in her individuality, it is somehow comforting to know that she is still very much a part of us, even as she grows away:

From Daddy:
Your serious kindness
Your love of counting things
Your enjoyment of air-travel
Your love of the outdoors, trees and leaves, and autumn
Your hatred of mushrooms and other suspicious looking foods
Your quiet work focus
Your love of walking and running
Your tendency to wake up too early
Your disdain for wasting time
Your ability to multi task
How unaware you are of your own beauty

From Mommy:
Your obsession with high heels and makeup and clothes on hangers
Your affinity for reading alone in bed, the same books over and over
Your love of dance
Your stuffed animal family
Your love for grandparents and small babies
Your rough and enthusiastic hugs and kisses
Your chattiness, especially on the phone
Your love of cookies
The way that you share
Your morning grumpiness


At 12:49 PM PST, Anonymous gila said...



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