Just the other day I again heard my daughter telling my sons what to do and what not do, sounding much like a drill sergeant as she shouted to them, “We are not allowed to watch that show! That is a bad show!” I‘ve heard her tell them, “We need to get in the car now!” or “Hurry up! We are going to be late.”
I wonder who she sounds like….but that is a different blog topic. As I’ve shared with you before, I have three children. My two boys, ages 9 and 14 have ADHD and my daughter, age 7 is a typical child.
Life for us is probably not what you’d see in most homes with “typical” children today. The small tasks of everyday life are often stumbling points for us, like getting ready for our days, getting our belongings organized, remembering a very important assignment or appointment, or just considering others around us.
I often find myself micromanaging the details of my children’s life as a result of this. There is a need for me to stay on top of things because my boys don’t have the follow through that others their age may have. I frequently check their schedules, assignment books, homework, grades, calendars and the like to ensure they’re not missing something important (which still happens at times).
Because my daughter is the youngest of the three she has grown up living this way. And because she is a natural take-charge kind of girl (aka “bossy”), she rarely misses an opportunity to tell her brothers what to do—or not do, for that matter.
Is this really a good thing? I have struggled with this question since she could talk and her bossiness began. I repeatedly tell her that I, being the mom, will deal with her brothers’ behaviors and that she does not need to do so. So far, I’ve not been very successful.
I so want her to be seven and not feel the need—or desire—to be grown up and take care of everyone. Childhood goes by so quickly and before we know it, they are, indeed, grown up. To laugh and play and chat like only a 7-year-old girl can —that’s what I pray for her.
I think I’m fighting a losing battle. So, rather than butt heads with her, we give her many opportunities to do things she enjoys that her brothers are not interested in. We figure this way, she has no one to take care of but herself, and can enjoy herself immensely. So she is in gymnastics and piano lessons and gymnastics and mad science club and…did I mention gymnastics?
As I sat in the gym and watched her in class last week I heard her telling all the other girls in her class what to do…