Sometimes I do a double take when I see Natalie's friends. Sometimes they are dressed in clothes that make them look thirteen. Lipstick is on their lips. Some have told Natalie that she's too old to like Disney Princesses. They'll say, "You know they aren't REAL, right?" in snotty voices. So far, Natalie has not let their opinions deter her from liking what she likes.
I'm very happy she still does the following:
1. Wears her princess dresses out.
At the park, she's been told she shouldn't wear her dresses out because they are "for babies." Sometimes Natalie has run inside with tears in her eyes. I explain that there are grown adults who wear costumes. Cosplay anyone? For the most part Natalie will tell those kids, "I'll like what I want!"
2. Sucks Her Thumb
She mainly does this when she's tired. She used to suck her thumb all the time. It hasn't messed up her teeth either. Still, I know I should stop her, but sometimes I think, "This is one of the last things left of her tiny childhood."
3. Sits on my lap
She loves to climb on me. Sometimes she wants hugs. Sometimes she wants to cuddle. Sometimes she wants a place to play Minecraft.
-4. Dresses like a kid.
As I mentioned, some kids show up dressed like a teenager. Natalie still wears clothes from Gymboree, and she will until she outgrows the clothing brand. Some kids have already started to say Gymboree is for babies, and I just want to tug on their flat ironed hair and tell them to shut it.
5. Still wants to be carried.
I know I won't be able to carry her for much longer. She's getting too heavy. She finally hit the 50 pound mark, so I begin to struggle pretty quickly. But I will still carry her upstairs when it is time for bed. She'll rest her head against my shoulder and whisper, "I love my Mommy." One night I'll have to tell her, "Mommy can't do it anymore. You're too big now." Daddy is still able to carry her, but he has a bad back, so his days are numbered too.
I miss her being like this.
But I also look forward to seeing what she'll be like when she grows.
Will she always stand up for what she likes?
Or will she eventually tell me no Gymboree and oh, can she please dye her hair purple like some of her friends?
I guess I'll find out!