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As a mom, there’s nothing more joyful than watching your child’s personality unfold and evolve. But there’s also nothing more hilarious than realizing you’re raising a three-year-old…who’s going on 80. Here, five signs your kid might turn out to be an old (and totally thoughtful) soul.

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old soul books
Twenty20

Your Kid Prefers Books to Screens

No matter how many times you scroll through Instagram or cue up Sesame Street on your iPad, a toddler with an old soul has an attention span that always shifts to a place he deems way more enticing: His bookshelf. The good news is there’s a lot less blue light. The bad news is you’ll find yourself coming up with eight million defenses against “just one more chapter” before bed.

RELATED: Hooray! Screen Time for Kids is (Mostly) Fine, Say Pediatricians

old soul solo play
Twenty20

And Doesn’t Mind Spending Time Alone

Kids with old souls are pros when it comes to keeping themselves occupied. It’s not that they don’t get along with, say, a younger brother or sister; it’s just that they’re pretty chill about getting lost in a Lego project or train set solo.

old soul grandma
Twenty20

They Have a Special Relationship with Grandma

You know the drill: When Grandma rolls into town, it’s like you’ve got a VIP in the house. In fact, kids with older souls tend to gravitate more toward adults than kids their own age for two reasons: 1. They crave calmness. 2. They’re always up for lively conversation. (Yep, kids who are wise beyond their years love to make even a nonsensical effort to engage.)

old soul empathy
Twenty20

And Are Empathetic to Those Around Them

Say you stub your toe and get an “ow-ie.” A kid with an old soul will stop what he or she's doing and offer comfort. Maybe that means giving you a favorite toy (temporarily) or offering to kiss where it hurts. However simple their actions, they act compassionately and notice other peoples' emotions/pain.

old soul responsible
Twenty20

They Are Responsible and Independent

You know your child is only five, but if it feels like she could totally hold down the fort and manage the other kids in the house, that’s probably because she can. 

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