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Guest Blog: For My Girls, To Be or Not To Be “Alike.” That is The Question.

August 9, 2011

Pam Thomas

Pam Thomas, Spirit of Purpose VP of Operations, shares an important Aha! Moment for her and her adorable daughters.

We all have LIES in our lives – those Labels, Illusions, Excuses and Stories that dictate how we live, make decisions and interact with others. My dilemma focused on Excuses.

My love for fashion began years ago in junior high school – wearing the latest designs in shoes, jeans, jackets, and fashion accessories. It’s still strong today, which is why it’s no mystery that my two daughters also have a love of fashion. Funny though, they are only 5 and 6, but definitely know what they like.

Getting them ready for school in the morning had been a fairly easy task. I’d lay out their outfits the night before so that it would be a ‘no brainer’ in the rush of the morning. However, selfishly I tended to always lay out identical outfits for my girls, and nine out of ten times they agreed to my choice. I say “selfish” because it was an Excuse and didn’t require more thought and energy than necessary. It was easy.

Then one day, their teacher pulled me aside and stated “you might want to consider letting them wear different outfits to allow them to build their own identity.” Hmmm, I thought to myself. Wouldn’t that create chaos? Would they like looking different? How would they feel?

So, always striving to be the best parent possible, I took the teacher’s counsel and advice to heart, and began dressing them in identical outfits, but in different colors. It seemed to work okay for a while, but still wasn’t addressing the “identity” matter.

I then had an aha! moment where I began to allow my girls to select their own outfits and much to my surprise, not only did they enjoy doing it because it made them feel like “big girls.”  I actually enjoyed watching them revel in making their own decisions. They do a great job at making their selections – with input from mommy when asked. And, I’ve noticed on occasions, their voicing opinions on one another’s choice of outfits. “You should wear pink socks with that skirt,” or “here’s your green headband, wear it!” My, how they grow so fast!

The lesson learned for me is two-fold:

1. I shouldn’t make Excuses when it comes to my children. Easy isn’t always best, especially when it comes to exploring and celebrating their individuality.

2. I shouldn’t have assumed that a 5- and 6-year-old weren’t capable of making choices, relative to their ages. They do – albeit candy corn print pants and floral printed shirts don’t match – but their rationale is that “the shirt has orange in it just like the pants.”

Okay, who am I to judge?? NO Excuses necessary.

It’s back to school time!  The perfect time to uncover and conquer the LIES that affect you and your children.

“LIES That Limit” is now available for KINDLE and other e-Readers!

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