What they never told you about little girls
“What are little girls made of? What are little girls made of? Sugar and spice and all things nice, that’s what little girls are made of.”
I daresay that the person who wrote that beautiful little verse didn’t have any daughters. Or maybe they enjoyed a little too much sugar and wine and all things fine…? Either way, my expectation when hearing I was expecting a girl almost nine years ago or my reality of eventually having two beautiful daughters were vastly different.
So today, to celebrate 8-years-and-counting of raising little girls, I will share with you a few of the things I have learnt along the way:
- Everything doesn’t HAVE to be pink
…it can also be rose, magenta, fuschia or blush and sometimes you can even get away with peach.
When my eldest was born I promised myself that I will raise her with things she loves and not only things others expect her to love. If she wanted to be a Ninja Turtle instead of Barbie, that would be fine with me. If she wanted her room blue instead of pink I would support her 100%. Took me a while to accept that she wants to be a pink Barbie. Full stop. Not because society expects her to…just because she really loves it.
- Little girls run in packs
In nature, you get a pride of lions and a school of fish. And did you know a group of rhino is called a crash of rhino? When referring to little girls I would probably compare them to the rhino rather than the fish…
Whether you call yours a herd, a mob or a litter (all really appropriate, by the way…) little girls run in groups. They spend all day with their friends at school and then want to call those same friends to tell them something the minute they get home. I see them when I pick them up from school in the afternoon: little troops of girls running around or sitting in a circle on the grass; figuring out the meaning of life. And a fight between friends can feel like the end of the world to them. Encourage these friendships as much as you can – little girls shouldn’t be walking the road to womanhood alone. Even better…encourage your little rhino to make friends with a lion or a kitten or a fish. Diversity is the spice of life.
- Prepare… For Hair… Everywhere…
Honestly, I never thought hair would make out such a huge part of my existence. Little girls’ approach to their hair is the very definition of a love-hate relationship. They moan when I comb and moan when I leave it. They complain when it’s too straight and grumble if it’s curly. One day it must be tied in a ponytail so tight that their little faces stretch halfway around their heads and the next it must be left completely loose like a little tornado around their head. There is always little-girl-hair all over the house. In the sink and in the shower. The biggest mystery is how there can be hair everywhere but no hairbands. Ever. Doesn’t matter how many I buy. And let me not start with the disappearance of 450 000 hairpins and -clips every year. I am telling you it is the strangest thing ever. But the final terrible worst thing about little-girl-hair? That is when they go to school and they bring back little friends with them. Little crawly yucky squiggly friends. In case you didn’t get it by now (if you have little girls you would, though) am talking about hair-lice. Aaaargh. Good luck getting those little suckers out! I don’t care that people try and make you feel better by saying “they only climb on clean hair” They are a total nightmare.
- Girls cry. A lot.
Sometimes they weep and sometimes they bawl. Often they sob and occasionally they wail. Whether they howl, snivel, blubber or just shed a tear, little girls tend to make their feelings known. If they are happy there will be a small trickle of tears. If they are sad there will be streams of tears. And if they did something wrong and want to get out of trouble there will be crocodile tears.
It is a fact that women cry more than men, reports the Huffington Post. One estimate puts it at an average of 5.3 times a month for women and 1.4 times a month for men. Furthermore, German research reported by the Telegraph suggests that the average crying session lasts six minutes for women and two to four minutes for men. My personal eight-year-long case study suggests that these figures are about right. Unless you are combing their hair…then little girls can cry up to five times as much. Unless you are trying to comb lice out of their hair – that would bring it up to about ten times as much for little girls and fifty times as much for their moms. Sometimes the only way to handle the whine is to have some more wine. But just before you loose all hope and grab another bottle, there is one more thing I can tell you about little girls…
- They are the best snugglers in the world
So often we are advised not to let our children share a bed with us because it will apparently “hinder their personal development” or “stop them from becoming independent”. But here is my own personal advice: when you hear the pitter-patter of little feet in the middle of the night, don’t send them back to their own beds. Lift the duvet and allow that little body to crawl in next to you. Because little girls are the best snugglers in the world. No matter how tall they get, their little bodies still fit perfectly into mom’s with their legs curled up in the foetal position and their hair tickling your chin (let’s hope it’s just hair tickling your chin and not lice…) It has been proven that cuddling with little girls brings mom’s crying down from the average of 5.3 times a month to at least half that amount (Source: Myself) and wine consumption down to a third (Source: my credit card receipts). So hold them a little longer and snuggle a little more because before you know it they will consider themselves all grown-up and then the little-girl kisses and cuddles might not be distributed as freely any longer.
We greatly appreciate all feedback and enjoy a good discussion. However if we find your comments offensive or abusive towards our writers or readers we will appreciate it all by ourselves and then delete it. We are looking forward to enjoying and sharing your open-minded and responsible comments.