SO, What does Individuality really mean?
Literally, according to the dictionary it means the qualities that distinguish one person or thing from another; identity.
I think the real question is how do we find, cherish and let these qualities grow within ourselves? As moms and dads, how do we allow our own children seek out their individuality?
When I study my own 2 sons, I see two very unique individuals. Sure they have the same hair and eye color, both tan in the summer, share a few common interests and make similar expressions, but it stops there. One is messy while the other one is neat; one is gregarious while the other remains reserved; one ties his shoes and the other one forgets; one is musical and the other one just likes to listen to his brother; one looks at sports for a good time while his bro lives off the competitiveness.
It is kind of mystical that 2 children can be born to the same parents, grow up in the same house drinking identical water, and be best buddies yet so different from one another. I could not be happier. I see so many kids unhappy with trying to be an individual who they are not but rather expected to be…It makes me sad.
It is the age old argument of nature vs. nurture. Some things we just cannot force. We are born with our very own capabilities and nature, and it is so difficult to want to mold that into what is expected, but think about how incredibly boring it would be if we all did the anticipated? We have 4 people in our immediate family, and only one of us can carry a tune and pick that tune up on an instrument. Believe me, I have tried and I cannot force it out in myself.
We all maintain our individuality while as a foursome, we also have our own uniqueness. This is perhaps that nurture part. Giving back to the community is something that I constantly drive home with the boys and something we do together. Biking around the city, checking out sites, and getting exercise and fresh air is another example of our family as a whole doing what we like and enjoy.
Part of what makes me unique is I speak my mind, and I figured that seeking out individuality was an important enough of an issue for me to speak up on, so I said yes to UPMC.
You can share here your family’s uniqueness for a chance to win a Pittsburgh Staycation with lots of goodies (including a hotel stay and sports package!!) to let your whole gang explore what they like…go ahead (and while you are at it – feel free to share below in the pink comments section your thoughts…).
Disclosure: I was compensated by UPMC Health Plan to talk about Individuality and their contest. All opinions remain my own (of course).
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