What a privilege it is to raise a little girl.

There’s just something about a little girl.

Oh, boys are special, there’s no doubt about it. Your mama heart will melt every time that boy snuggles in your lap and plants a sticky kiss right on your cheek.

Boys aren’t easy, not by any means, but some things are just simpler with them.

Because a little girl?

She is soft and sweet in the most adorable of ways, but when she pouts that lip and pops that hip, God help the soul who tries to change her mind.

One moment you’ll want to bottle up her lispy, singsong voice and save it forever. The next moment you’ll ask her why she’s being difficult and she’ll say, “Because I like being difficult.”

At the ripe old age of two.

She is as smart as she is sassy—she’s already planning her next move 10 steps ahead of you, and you’ll spend your whole life trying to keep up.

She is fierce and independent and strong, and your heart will swell with pride every time she does something extraordinary, which will be often.

She might love dresses and frills and dolls. Or dirt and excavators and poking things with sticks. Or both.

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She might be a living, breathing replica of her mama, or be nothing like you. Either way, she’ll make sure you know that she’s her own person, through and through.

You will worry about her. That she’ll make good decisions and not put herself in risky situations. That she’s listening even when it seems like she isn’t, and that she’ll learn from her mistakes, as much as you want to keep her from making them in the first place.

You will encourage her to choose good people to walk with her through life, and to appreciate the value of true and kindred friendship.

You will pray that she always knows her worth, which is separate from her physical beauty.

And you will steel your heart for when she inevitably wants to leave you.

Because little girls like to believe they’re all done growing up and don’t need their mothers anymore, even when they do.

You know this because you were a little girl once, too.

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Finally, you will hope that she comes back to you. Because no matter what, she’ll always be your little girl.

And maybe someday, if she ever has one of her own, she’ll understand.

What a privilege it is to raise a little girl.

This article was originally published on Facebook

Emily Solberg

Emily Solberg is a soldier, military spouse, mom to two toddlers, and fierce advocate of women supporting women. The goal of her writing is to help others feel less alone in their parenting journeys, and she isn’t afraid to share the hard along with the good. You can find more from her on her Facebook page, Shower Arguments.