Watching her personality develop and change has been one of the biggest satisfactions in my life. She fits in with the usual girl norm. Pink and purples, princess dresses and singing Disney tunes. I’ve noticed a significant change in her though over the last couple years that sets her apart and she reminds me of someone that I didn’t expect. My dad.
My dad is someone who is always interested in the how and whys. Wherever we would go it was a learning lesson. The one we got the most was “How do you think that rock got so round?” It may seem silly, but it really makes you stop and think. Something as simple as a round rock we found in a stream or a green plant has so much to learn from and he always encouraged that no matter what we were doing. My friends would come over to play and inevitably it became a real life version of the Magic School Bus where we were being taught the life cycle of a lady bug by my dad. He has a wealth of information about so many things that any time spent with him, you are guaranteed to learn something new. Whether you want to or not. Being around someone who has such an interest in nature and life, it’s hard not to be drawn in. I see so much of that in Hayden. No matter where we go, she finds flowers or plants to pick. I find those said plants in EVERYTHING. The car, my dryer, her backpacks, my bed, her brother’s bed. The list goes on. There are holes throughout our yard where she’s planted who knows what. She captures butterflies and frogs, and catches bugs in the house to release back outside. Because their family is looking for them. Duh. She’s constantly finding rocks to add to her collection, and I notice all around the house where she has added her special touch and is keeping life around a little longer.
It no longer catches me off guard when we go from talking ice cream flavors to “So where does God live? I really want to meet him.” Or hearing a five year old say “Oooohhh, look at the color of that Geranium!” She believes in fairies and magic and lives by the understanding that anything is possible with make believe. She’s curious why cupcakes rise in the oven and still can’t quite figure out how cucumbers and pickles are actually the same vegetable. She is just as excited watching our garden grow as she is for a friend’s birthday party. Her desire to learn about all that is nature pushes me to learn more as well so that I can be able to answer her questions. Her large imagination reminds me of when I was little and takes me back to all the magical things my dad did for us to make life so exciting and adventurous. I can’t get enough of her curiosity and I will do my very best to feed and nurture that quality in her.
(This picture kills me. She went out late one night by herself and just wanted to “be quiet.”)
It’s a spirit I pray never dies in her and I can only hope she grows up to love and appreciate that quality in herself and see that it will take her places she can only dream of. And very soon I feel the question will come about “Do you know how that rock got so round?”