The Developing Personality

Yesterday evening as I nursed W, she bit me. Pretty commonplace experience, I know. The only thing that made it remarkable is that she’s 10 months old, and it was the first time she’s EVER bitten. I yelped (as one does). What came next surprised me; she started to cry. Not just whimper a little, not cry in anger, but SOB big, broken-hearted, hiccupy sobs. I comforted her and we went back to nursing, and a few minutes later she bit again. I yelped again. She started sobbing again. Comfort, resume nursing…and then a third time (and again with the sobbing). After the third repetition of the entire sequence, she didn’t bite again. I guess she got the message.

It occurred to me afterward, however, that this was the first time she’s ever thought I was upset with her. I wasn’t; my yelp was in pain rather than anger, but she clearly thought I was mad. Apparently she’s a darn sensitive little girl, because she was clingy and needed extra love for hours afterward.

Her personality is starting to shine through more and more every day. Some aspects of who she shows me she is, I’ve known for ages. She’s stubborn, for instance, and very curious. But the sensitivity caught me by surprise; I sort of thought she was a little bruiser, an even-keel kid who didn’t get easily knocked off-kilter emotionally…and apparently, I was dead wrong. Go figure. All of which makes me wonder, what other aspects of her emerging personality will catch me completely off-guard?


What parts of your child’s personality did you see from day one, and which ones surprised you later on?




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