Everyone jokes about kids being either a “Daddy’s Girl” or a “Mama’s Boy” – although being a Mama’s Boy is not universally accepted as a good thing, I think it’s nice when a son is close with his mother. (In a healthy manner, of course. In a Bates Motel manner, not so much…) I was certainly what could be called a Daddy’s Girl and still am.
I sort of knew that, if we had a daughter, she would be close with her dad.
What I didn’t know was just how much it would bother me at times.
So, Truth About Motherhood #3 that I wish I had known is: there will be times that your child does not want you, she wants her daddy.
This does not mean that you are a terrible mother or that you might as well move out because the only person in the house who cares about you is the cat and he’s not even a real person. (I never said that, I swear!) ((Okay, maybe I did say that once. But I never really believed it…))
This simply means that children go through phases where they prefer one parent over the other. ((I’m still waiting for the phase where LB prefers me. I’m sure it will come when she’s got the stomach flu and is vomiting everywhere. Then will be the time she wants me most.))
With LB it’s not overt – I mean, she doesn’t shriek and try to get away from me while reaching out for the DreadBrewer. But, it’s very obvious to me that she thinks DB is the most awesomest, funniest guy in the whole wide world. He can make her laugh and giggle and smile without any apparent effort. She lights up like an old Christmas Tree when he comes home. After her 4 month vaccinations I tried to put her down for the night, but she sobbed hysterically until DB came and did some sort of super special trick that only he can do and she went out like a light.
There are times that I get all offended, like, “Hey, I carried you for 9 months! I gave birth to you!! What am I? Chopped liver?!?” but those usually pass fairly quickly. For the most part, I’m thankful that she adores her daddy (and that the feeling is mutual). But sometimes it’s hard to get over it.
I guess I should have remembered from my own childhood that it is possible to be closer to one parent than the other at any given time – and that it won’t necessarily always be the same parent. And I should take advantage of this time that LB thinks her daddy is the fun one and her mommy is the boring one who does such mundane tasks as feeding her and wiping her bottom. Because, there will be a time when the shoe is on the other foot and she will be stuck on me like white on rice and I won’t be able to get anything done or leave her with someone else for the day.
At least that’s what I tell myself when I’m feeling particularly unappreciated by my daughter.
And then, she’ll laugh at something I do or give me that toothless grin while smacking me in the face, and I know, I really really know, that she loves me just as much as she loves her dad. And I’m okay with her being a Daddy’s Girl.