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My Niece wants to be a Dinosaur...

I frequently talk about my niece and nephew because they have quite the personalities.

In the most recent episode, my sister informed my siblings and I that our niece had determined what career path she had decided to follow as she continues to grow.

This revelation came with video evidence, where my niece was asked which career she preferred; a princess or a dinosaur.

With no hesitation, she confidently said 'dinosaur', as she continued to hoard whatever food she was devouring in her chipmunk-like cheeks.

Although this may not be a rare career choice at this age, it never ceases to amaze me just how unique the statements can be.

With her conviction, I probably wouldn't challenge my nieces' assertion in fear of a dinosaur-like response. 

She knows what she wants.

So why is this important to me?

I find it terribly intriguing that a two-year-old has such a grasp on decision-making at a time where it is easy for people older than them to write them off. 

Not that I am cosigning the possibility of becoming a dinosaur, but I'd be remiss to rule out her ability to know what she wants at this current time.  Disregarding that would be a disservice to her and me. 

If I were to make an assumption based off of the thought process that "she doesn't know what she wants", there will be an inevitable conflict that may cause a riot.  She will be upset, stressed out, confused as to why she can't be a dinosaur, and probably ready to deal with me in whichever way necessary; peacefully or aggressively. 

Consequently, her responses to my assumptions will most likely make whatever time I am spending with her uncomfortable or frustrating.  Ultimately, is this really a battle worth taking?

At the end of the day, people are going to make decisions at every age.  Sometimes our loved ones will decide on things that we may find strange, outlandish, or quite frankly, extinct possibilities.

Our job is to be there as support.  In certain circumstances, all we can do is help guide them through their options and let them find out what it is that they really want to do.  Meet them were they are, and have the conversation.

What may seem relatively insignificant when dealing with a two-year-old, is actually an opportunity to establish a groundwork of open dialogue.  There is a progression from childhood to adulthood, and we want to make sure that we are paying attention to that progress.  Allowing the conversations earlier can prevent the surprises later.

It really isn't about the fact that she wants to be a dinosaur, it's the fact that she's making a decision.  Rather than making the decision for her, I just sit back, laugh, and am ready for any explanation she decides to give.  After that, then we will be able to make the action plans towards achieving dinosaur status...

Or face the grim reality that being a dinosaur may not be one of the most practical life choices, and promptly provide alternatives to avoid an altercation. 

Not sure if it's opened, but maybe Jurassic Park is still hiring...

Until next time,

Long Live The People

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