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Like Parent, Like Child: A Look in the Mirror

We see our children as their very own selves, yet we peer through the genetic stew to the many people who have lent their chromosomes in their creation and think “like parent, like child.”

Lisa, of Grown and Flown writes:  Reproduction it turns out, is just that.  While we strive to treat our children as their very own selves, we cannot help but peer through the genetic stew to the many people who have lent their chromosomes to the task of creating our children.  When lucky, we see the echos of the traits we fell in love with in our child’s other parent.  Sometimes we see a beloved parent, grandparent or sibling in a smile, a gritty determination or just the tilt of a head. But often times, we see ourselves mirrored and think “like parent, like child.”

Even though we know that it is coming, the experience of seeing ourselves replicated can be a startling one.   The physical similarities can be charming, or unsettling.  Yet it is our personality traits, seemingly planted at birth in our offspring, that can be the most challenging to face.

I am easily distracted, capable of losing my way even in the midst of a sentence. I can be telling a story and, before I realize it, I am telling a different one and have no idea of how I lost my way.  I have been having senior moments since I was ten.

So when I gave birth to a child who would put one shoe on and then lose interest and move on to something else, it came as no surprise.  I watched my own wandering mind play out in him a thousand times and, while I should have been understanding, I was often furious.  Seeing myself in him should have brought compassion yet, instead, it engendered anger as I screamed at him on 2,250 separate mornings to get ready for school.

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