So apologies that this is not at all fitness related, but being a Mum of two girls with the holidays coming up it has been on my mind a little. People often ask me for gift ideas for girls. The longer I’m a parent the more I realise that even a small gift can make a really positive statement and impact to a young girl. Sounds a bit over the top I know, but I’ll hopefully be able to explain where I’m coming from. This is not a gift buying guide it is just some food for thought because it has been in my thoughts! 🙂
Basically I have learnt as a Mum that kids learn through role modelling. Heavily. They really are little mimics and sponges. They just absorb and pick up what is going on around them. This filters across into all sorts of situations- they pick up your language verbal and physical, they notice your habits healthy or otherwise, they figure out your values and how to please (or upset) you! They also pick up on what you do with your time, whether you work, clean, cook, spend lots of time on the phone or the computer etc and they mimic these things through play and in reality (when they can). As they get older I’m sure they will be more actual mimicking and less play mimicking, if that makes sense! So what you do and how you carry yourself is important to these little people.
Being little girls it is easy to just buy them cute and pretty things, books, clothes, toys, you name it they all come in the girly version. There is nothing wrong with this and honestly my girls love cute and pretty things, they just do. But they also love to get dirty and play “real life” imagination games and read about all sorts of topics. Even topics that are sometimes deemed masculine!
They love to wear princess dresses and pretend to be fairies. But lets be honest the world isn’t full of princesses and fairies. It is totally fine to buy these things and let your daughter indulge in those fantasies.
But what is also really wonderful to see girls receive is gifts that encourage them to grow up and be strong and independent. Sure they love to be princesses but they also love to pretend to be Doctors and Builders. They love reading Cinderella, but they also love reading and learning about Dinosaurs, Snakes and Tigers.
I think it is important to send bigger and stronger messages then those in many princess fantasy stories. Girls can grow up and be almost anything they put their mind to if they work hard and have the drive to get there. Marrying a prince is lovely, but it is unlikely to be a reality. I’m not saying growing up to be happily married to their “prince” will not happen, as many of us are happily married to our “princes”. BUT in my opinion the best way to role model positive relationships is by having them and not just through a make believe story, with heavily defined gender roles.
The point to my rant is not to deny these traditional “girly” gifts to your girls if they enjoy those things, but to consider a balance. Girls love playing with balls and bats too, they love swimming and running, they love to learn about all kinds of things and they love pretending to go to work in all kinds of jobs. So please if you are buying a gift for a little girl this Holiday season just have a think about the messages in the gift you are giving!
Thanks for listening to my rant! How do you feel about this? Is it something that has ever crossed your mind? I’m sure the reverse is applicable to some extent for boys too.
Also I wanted to add I did have some blood tests to figure out what was going on. I am low in iron, as I suspected and there were some other results which I will share with you in a future post (however don’t be concerned I’m healthy). I just didn’t want you all to think I was self diagnosing and self treating and to encourage you all to check with your Doctor if you are concerned about your own health! 🙂