Be Beautiful, Little One, From The Inside Out

No longer am I the mother of an infant; I have a toddler. She can repeat sounds, mirror facial expressions, copy movements and gestures, and attempts to use things like Mama and Daddy do.

She is always mimicking. Always repeating. Always copying. Always watching.

One of the places I see this most clearly is in, yes, the bathroom. I have an audience if I go there for any reason. She’ll try to step into the shower, point to the toilet paper, grab the toothpaste and say “ahhhh,” and throw Q-tips in the trash.

But her favorite thing is to watch Mama put on makeup.

She’ll sit (safely) on the counter, brush in hand, pretending to put things on her face. She’ll look in the mirror and smile at herself. I’ll encourage her and say “Who is that beautiful baby?!” or “ooooooh, so pretty!”

She needs me to teach her more than just how to put on mascara and the art of blending eyeshadow.

One thing I’ve learned this past year is that time is valuable and precious. As a working mom, I realize that I have different opportunities to teach and train her than those who don’t work outside the home. As a result, I’m always looking for ways to make the most of our time together.

We practice words in the car, read several books before bed (or whenever she asks to), and we sing…constantly. Few things bring me more joy than watching her learn and remember songs from Bible class and do them with me.

She’s my sidekick. She watches me cook. She’s learning to “sweep” and put things in the trash or the dirty clothes hamper. She can already pick up her own toys (with a little guidance).

I want her to know that there is more to her than how she looks. Much more.

I tell her she’s special. I tell her she’s smart. I tell her she’s sweet. I tell her she’s a good girl. I tell her that I missed her during the day. I tell her that I love her sweet smile. I tell her I love to hear her giggle. I tell her that she is oh so loved.

I want her to have fun with makeup, but not feel like she needs it. I want her to know her true beauty comes from within. I want her to enjoy being a woman.

I want to always see that sweet smile on her face. I want her to be confident, but humble and kind. I want her to love her neighbor as herself. I want her to see herself as I see her.

I want her to see herself as one created in the image of God.

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