Friendships are extremely important. They make a lifelong impact on us and shape who we are and who we become, and they start early on in life. My daughter has been in the friendship making stage for a little over a year now (so, clearly she's a seasoned pro), but I still worry about her every day, especially as a new mom and especially as she continues to go out into the world and make new relationships with different people. My mind worries and wonders and as I watch her befriend someone on the playground, I can't help but think the things every new mom thinks when she watches her kid make friends. Will she make the right decisions? Will her friends hurt her, or help her? Will they be positive influences, or negative ones. Guys, my daughter is a toddler and, yes, I'm already worried.
When I watched my daughter interact with other kids for the first time, I'll admit that I was worried. Excited, but worried. I didn't want her to hurt the other kid by accident and I didn't want the other parent to take offense to anything she did or potentially said. I was also excited for her to make a new friend and start being more independent and hoped that this interaction would end in smiles, instead of tears.
I also was brought back to my childhood with my first set of close friends and began to think about the future and what my daughter's memories of her friends might be like. Whether your friendships last your whole life or for just a short amount of time, you're impacted by the people who bring into your life and, well, I want my daughter to be positively impacted. So, as I watch my daughter make new friends, there are many thoughts that run through my head, including the following: