Since, given her natural beauty and grace, it is impossible for me to resist posting numerous photos of the Q dressed in beautiful things (most of which have been sent to her by her many doting "fans" in the adoption community and beyond), I think it is also my duty as a mother to reveal the Q as she really is....the Q in her natural habitat.
As I've said, the Q is 100% all-natural jock. If she could, she would spend all of her time surrounded by balls of various varieties. When we take our long strolls and runs around the neighborhood, she spends her time pointing out every basketball hoop we pass. In fact, she knows by heart the location of every hoop within a 20-block radius of our house, and will signal them when we're three or four blocks away.
At home, playing with her own Q-sized hoop, she prefers to have at least three balls of different types in play at the same time. Her favorites are basketballs and soccer balls, but she also likes baseballs and tennis balls, waterballs and golf balls. Any ball will do in a pinch.
At naptime, she takes them to bed with her, and lines them up carefully between the crib rail and the wall before falling asleep. If she isn't sleepy yet, she will sit in her crib and toss her balls up in the air, catching them again, or bounce them off the sides of her crib (practice makes perfect...and she has quite the arm on her for a 21-month-old!)
The Q doesn't care for clothing or sparkly things. She doesn't gravitate toward the color pink, and glitter and jewels leave her cold. She genuinely dislikes dolls (this is a very definite aversion in her...not quite sure where that came from) and is indifferent toward stuffed animals. It's the sports equipment that she loves, that and tech gadgets, like iPods, remote controls and cell phones.
The Q is not a whiner, and she is not a lightweight. She is afraid of nothing and no one. A hard bonk to the head while playing results in a flurry of tears and scowls that lasts all of five seconds before she shakes it off and goes on her merry way. She loves to travel, and takes on each new experience with a fearless joy that makes my heart swell with pride. She is a strong personality who states her preferences and takes her cue from no one but herself. She is independent, cheerful, ever-eager and resilient in all situations.
(The Q will make a basketball hoop out of anything handy - in this case, a leaf-bag frame. )
I never had a particular idea of what sort of child I hoped to have, or what sort of person I hoped she's grow up to be. But if I had a single preference, it was that my girl would be a tomboy. As I've said, I definitely have my feminine side along with my tomboy side - it isn't that I don't understand the impulse toward feminine ways. But tomboy is easier for me to understand and to handle. I have always had just a bit of a hard time with girls who will wear nothing but pink from head to toe, are afraid of dogs and dirt, and strike pageant-style poses when you point a camera at them.
Of course I have no idea how my girl will evolve, or what she will become. But what she is now is perfect for me. I'm not sure how I got so lucky. Fortune has smiled on me in this life in so many ways. I can't wait to see what comes next!