In the Summer of 2007 Princess Imagination entered our lives and forever transformed our understanding of what is important.
Even as a baby it was easy to see how much she loved learning. She was always observing, always trying to figure out the world around her.
This quality makes parenting her a wonderful challenge, because she is constantly asking questions. Some questions are typical 5-year old questions (“but why can’t I have an M n’ M?”), but many stretch my explanatory abilities (“why is there no oxygen under the water?”), and others push me to examine the coherence and integrity of my own thinking (“is Jesus part of God, or is Jesus really God?”). When I take her questions seriously, I generally learn at least as much as she does in the answering.
Tyler and I often joke that Princess Imagination is a mini-Serena (just as the Gigglemonster is a mini-Tyler), and in many ways this is really true. Emotionally and intellectually we often process the world in the same way. This can be a wonderful advantage, as when Tyler is completely mystified by her reaction in a given situation and I just intuitively understand. However, it can also be difficult to watch her struggle with problems I have battled myself. Although she is very relational and exuberantly affectionate with those she loves, she is also sometimes painfully shy. She is smart and driven to learn and excel, but this sometimes makes it hard for her to accept when she does not immediately master a given skill or new challenge. Learning how to offer her support and guidance, while also giving her space to find her own way, can be hard when I want to spare her experiences that were painful for me. But the experiences are necessary. They are helping her grow into an amazing little woman. It is such a privilege to get to watch this process from the best seats in the house.