You look like an Oompa Loompa, was my first reaction when I looked at my daughter after she had applied my makeup bronzer to her entire face. She was covered in mineral peony with a slight glittering finish. It was applied so thick that I couldn’t see her eyebrows, her green eyes complimented the orange tint and she really did look like she had jumped out of the Wizard of Oz. Happy with her makeup attempt and not fussed with my critic off she went.
Lately, I have noticed her copying me in many ways. She sees me eat, she wants to eat. I have a drink she wants one. I put the car window down, then she does. These things don’t bother me too much, except now I need new mineral bronzer but realistically I don’t want her to turn out like me. I don’t want her to copy all of my traits. Especially my negative traits and characteristics. But I know children mirror their parents.
I recall the moment I raised my voice and the words that left my mouth sounded just like my mother. A cold tingling feeling went through my body. I had been on the receiving end of those words 35 years ago and now I was using them. My heart sank. I knew it didn’t feel good back then and now somehow those words, that tone had remained inside of me for over 3 decades and out they came.
I had mirrored my mother’s negative traits. My heart sank. Time to rewire, change, shake things up a bit, anything to let go of mirroring bad behaviour.
So I am looking at my daughter more closely. What else is she mirroring me that I need to change? I want her to be her own person, not a mini me. I know some things I can’t avoid she will copy but I want to make sure they are things that serve her well and don’t take away her own identity and don’t influence her negatively.
I have a friend who is quite bossy and so is her child. A controlling parent will create a controlling child who rebels so you end up with the feeling of butting heads constantly. Yell at your child they will yell back. As parents, if you can look at the bigger picture when you are watching your child’s behaviour and start taking some accountability that maybe they are just copying you. More often than not, if we change they will too.
I have enough incentive now to make sure my daughter doesn’t carry my bad behaviour for the next 30 years. I am a work in progress and she is reflecting that change.
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