It started out as a simple task – find a lunch box for Camille, who is moving to a new school and will need one. But then it turned into so much more, because I have a tendency to over-think the little things and turn them into very big things.
First of all – can I just say that picking out a first lunch box is a very big girl thing to do? How have we suddenly arrived at this milestone?
Lee, Camille and I browsed the lunch box aisle at Target, but didn’t see anything cool enough for a first lunch box, so we turned to Amazon.com. The plan was to narrow the list of lunch boxes to two or three, and then let Camille choose the winner.
We had no trouble finding cute lunch boxes, but suddenly I was struck with the realization that I was totally gender stereotyping my child. I’ve always thought I did a good job not forcing “girly” things on her. Her room isn’t overly girly and her wardrobe has just as many pants as dresses. Yet, her favorite color is pink, she loves princesses, baby dolls, and cooking, so she definitely has girly tastes.
Looking at the choices we’d made on Amazon, I realized I was only offering her fairly “girly” lunch boxes. If she wants to be girly, that’s fine, but if she’d rather have a lunch box with trucks on it, that’s ok too. I want her to be herself.
We showed her the lunch box pictures and asked her which was her favorite, but her favorite was always whichever one we showed her last. This was a little frustrating, because I was trying so hard to let her pick, and not to be the one to decide which bag she would carry to school.
Then I realized I was being pretty silly. She’s two. Yes, she has opinions and likes and dislikes, but she doesn’t put nearly the emphasis on her first lunch box that I do. If it’s full of yummy food and is reasonably cute, I think she’ll be happy enough with it.
So I picked this one for her.
It’s cute. I love horses, and since she can’t tell me which is her favorite, she’ll have to make do with my favorite for now. It can be monogrammed, so that’ll be fun. It’s functional. It’s not too girly. Score.
As she gets older, I’m sure she’ll assert herself more and more as our tastes matter less and less. So for now, I’ll just embrace these opportunities to accessorize my baby girl to my liking!