When I was pregnant with N and we found out she was a girl, I was afraid. I have never been very girly in general (I still can only put on the most basic eye makeup without looking like a little girl who got into mommy's things). And maybe because I have had so many close friendships with girls in my life, the absolute worst moments of all were those sniping, in-fighting middle-school girl moments of orchestrated social destruction, reputation assassination, and any other amount of dramatic-sounding scenarios that might seem silly to an outsider, but which have been completely devastating to me.
So I was afraid, because I didn't know if I would know what to do with a girl, if she would be born wanting to know how to do a manicure or how to French braid her own hair (I have never even been able to French braid somebody else'e hair, much less my own). Or maybe she would learn her housekeeping skills from me, and we would perpetuate clutter and lack of focus and laundry baskets full of clothes that may or may not be clean (or possibly dirty, I really can't remember) to the next generation as well. Or that maybe I would forget to teach her everything I know about respecting herself, everything I learned the hard way, and she would end up with the wrong friends, or the wrong boy, or the wrong profession...
It's possible that I was getting ahead of myself.
But now -- now that I know her -- how do I explain it? She has a gentle sweetness about her that is like a balm to my fears; I know that I will teach her the same way I teach C -- one thing at a time, one day at a time, and lots of prayers in between. She's like a piece of sweet, fragrant spice cake, so delightful -- smiles and coos and even a few little laughs, already! I love her so much that the words "I love her" are inadequate, ringing flatly like dull dented metal hitting the ground. I kiss her pink toes and sing a song I made up about her. I love her but it is so much more than that.