I know that lately all of my posts have been about my relationship or my boobs, but can I stop for just a minute here and talk about Catie?
Because, my god. That kid.
She is this amazing combination of toddler and teenager. She can still throw a tantrum with the best of them — although to be fair, she didn’t have them for a long time, it’s only been since Lucy hit the “terrible twos” that Catie has started acting out again (obviously a case of sibling competition happening here). At the same time, she can throw her hands on her hips and heave a sigh at me, and I swear it feels like a 14 year-old just showed up in my house.
She picks up on everything. I can’t spell words around her anymore because she’ll immediately figure out what I’m trying to say that I don’t want her to hear.
She’s tall and skinny and she’s all long limbs that she hasn’t quite mastered yet. She’s clumsy, like a baby horse trying to find its legs.
She hides from my camera now, and on the rare occasions when she does smile for a picture, she does it awkwardly.
There are two missing teeth in that smile. Every day, she checks the mirror to see if her “grown-up teeth” have come in yet.
She loves Skylanders and Angry Birds and Plants Vs Zombies and a million other video games, and I have no doubt that she’s going to grow up to be a video gamer chick. Her favorite baby-sitter plays Legend of Zelda with her after Lucy goes to bed.
She’s a tomboy. She doesn’t like to wear dresses, and on the rare occasions when she does, she wants to wear leggings or shorts under them (which is FINE with me.)
She still says she wants to be a paleontologist when she grows up.
One of her favorite songs is “Bohemian Rhapsody.”
She loves “Eye of the Tiger,” and songs by Michael Jackson and Duran Duran. She had me put the entire Xanadu soundtrack on her iPad so she can listen to it over & over, just like I did when I was a kid. (Only, you know, mine was on a cassette tape.)
She also loves most songs on pop radio – she’s a big Macklemore fan. I love singing along with her in the car while we drive.
She still believes in Santa Claus and the Tooth Fairy, although I know I only have a couple of years left for that. (I learned about Santa when I was 7.) One day, because of scheduling issues, she had to come with me to my chiropractor’s appointment, and he – being kind of an oddball dude – showed her a couple of magic tricks. She was amazed. It struck me that to her, there was no slight of hand or trick of the eye, that magic was all real to her. Which is pretty awesome.
But oh, she can be difficult. She’ll whine that I don’t like her because I only take care of Lucy and I don’t do anything for her, she’ll dig her heels in and refuse to try something new just because I suggested it, she’ll throw a fit because Lucy dared to pick up a toy that she hasn’t touched or played with in at least a year.
But then she’ll go the other direction and blow my mind. She’ll get out her old Halloween costumes so she and Lucy can play dinosaurs together…
…Or she, the one I’ve always called my Cautious Girl, will decide to go to some giant indoor trampoline place, which she would’ve been too scared to attempt even just a year ago, and she’ll launch herself off of a trampoline into a giant pit of foam blocks…
…Or she’ll sit down with Lucy to try to teach her how to write letters and color within the lines.
She has so much empathy for people around her. A little boy at daycare stomped on a caterpillar and killed it when they were playing outside – no reason why, he was just being a jerk, I guess – and Catie sobbed. She said she scooped it up with a leaf and put it under a bush in the shade to “bury it.” And then she cried to me, “And I told him that I hope he has a happy life in heaven.” I told her that heaven needs butterflies too, so it was ok, but she was heartbroken for that caterpillar.
Before kindergarten ended, she came home from school one day and told me, “Everyone in my class says that [little girl’s name] is fat, but I think she’s the beautifulest.” Since I was one of those fat little girls myself, my heart just melted.
Yesterday, I had to get my hair cut, and I had my hairstylist also do Catie’s hair, since it was looking really long and shaggy. She gave her this really great bob cut, and suddenly she looks so much more grown up to me.
Seriously, I do not know how I created a little girl that is this pretty. (I tend to not say too many flattering things about my ex-husband, but I think he gets the credit for most of her.)
She starts first grade in less than three weeks. I know she’s nervous about it, but she’s ready.
I hope she knows how proud I am of her. I tell her all the time, I just hope she hears me.
Because she is amazing.