Can You Describe a Kid in Three Words?

How would you describe your kid in three words?

This was a question on a form from my daughter’s pre-school. My first thought was “Does sweetest-little-lady-in-the-world count as one word?” My next thought was that it is an almost impossible task. If I could narrow down just three words to describe any of my kids, it would mostly depend on the day. Or even the time of day. The three words when it is an hour past their bed time and they are still running around their room are very different that the three words when they first wake up and come give me a hug.

The more I think about it, the teacher has to know how hard it is to narrow down a kid into just three words, so I wonder – what are they really getting at? I can’t help but feel they might be doing it more see what kind of answer I give, and not how the answer actually applies to my kid. For example, if I put the word “princess” down, that has to be a big red flag for me. Good luck expecting me to be able to hear anything less than a glowing report on how my kid is doing. Or if I say “smart” does she think I don’t have an accurate sense of my kid’s abilities? I mean, every parent thinks their kid is smart, but the world is full of dumb-dumbs.

Maybe I’m over-thinking it. Maybe she just wants to know what to expect from my kid. Which brings it right back to how hard it is to do that in just three words. I think it would be easier if my daughter was older. I have to believe it is going to be very easy to sum up a teenager in three words. Maybe not even that many. Most people that know me could probably describe me pretty well in three words. But a three year-old? She can be shy, goofy, smart, ditzy, respectful, rude, helpful, and obnoxious all while waiting in line to check out at the store. Throw a sugary treat into the mix and who the hell knows what you’ll get.

We ended up going with sweetheart, silly, and delicate. I think that pretty well covers our bases on however she might act. She goes out of her way to help another kid in the class? What a sweetheart – I told you so! She bursts out into tears because nobody would sit and listen to her reenact a scene from Frozen – well, told you so.

Maybe at the end of the school year I’ll ask her teacher to describe my daughter in three words and see what she says. I bet she’ll want to know if “smartest-little-cutie-face” counts as one word.

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