Monday, October 12, 2009

Being 6

I am the proud mother of a 6 almost 7 year old. Inside a 6 year old's mind must be a truly happy place to be. To be able to dance through life on a whim would be purely magical.

My 6 year old is one that has a hard time focusing on what she "supposed" to be doing. It's not ADD. . .she can focus fine in school - in fact almost too well. But unfortunately the rigors of 1st grade don't allow for a whole day to be spent on getting the googly eyes on her sock puppet positioned just right, so that leads to frustration and tears (I think less this year than last, so she's learning to adjust).

But no, her focus is difficult to maintain at home. Brushing teeth is a perfect example. I tell her to go brush. . .then 10 minutes later I tell her again. . .10 minutes and so on until she's finally in front of the mirror. But wait, first she has to wash her hands, but the sink is all wet, so first she has to dry the sink off, but the towel is wet from Melanie who just washed her hands, so she needs a new towel, and so on. Finally she gets her toothbrush in her hand but then she catches sight of herself in the mirror. Oh, look at the funny faces I can make! "Mommy, come here! Look at my fish face!"

"Yes, yes." I say. "Come on. Let's brush." I hurry her along and give her the toothpaste. Oh, too much toothpaste, need to start all over. Finally get just the right amount of paste and wetness on the brush so I retreat across the hall to let her brush.

And then "AAAAAAA!!!!!!"



"What, Kylie? Why are you screaming?"

"There is a fly in here!!!! AAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!"

I look to no avail. See no fly, anywhere.

"Kylie brush." It just by this points comes out of my mouth automatically for about the 3,000th time in a 5 minute period.

We have a rule that you stay in the bathroom over the sink while you are brushing your teeth. Does anyone else have to implement this rule? Well it's a rule that Kylie has successfully broken each and every time she brushes her teeth. She dances down the hall, comes to tell me a story about something that happened in school, goes through Melanie's things, etc, etc all while the toothbrush is in the side of her mouth brushing the same 2 molars.

Finally after 30 minutes from the first time I told her to brush, she is finished. Not sure if she actually got all the teeth, but maybe next time.

Then there are the times when we are all busy bees, cleaning, putting away clothes and so on. Melanie is quietly in her room doing what she is supposed to be doing. From Kylie's room I hear music and then. . .

"Turn, gallop, gallop, gallop, turn, plie'. Step to the side, turn, gallop, gallop, turn plie'." I open the door and see her eyes closed dancing around the room with a pile of shirts in her arms she is supposed to be putting away.

"Kylie. Focus please. Let's get your clothes put away, then you can dance."

"But Mommy, I'm working on my show for tonight. Watch." Then she proceeds to gallop, gallop, turn, plie'.

This past Saturday night, Melanie was at a sleepover and Tom didn't have to work. We had a rare night with just Kylie all to ourselves. Tom wanted to go for a run, so we decided to pack Kylie's bike in the car and all of us head to the canal.

"She has trouble going straight and getting herself started." I tell Tom.

Every time I try to get her to start herself, she has about 300 things to tell me. All non-bike related.

"Are those bats?" She says pointing to the Cormorants perched on the dock.

"No, honey, Cormorants. Ok. you need to put your foot down and push off as the other foot goes to the pedal."

"Is this the deep end?"

"Deep end of what?"

"The canal?'

"It's all deep, all the way through."

"What if I lose my jacket?"

I look at her. Her zippered sweatshirt in on her securely, zipped even.

"How would you lose your jacket?"

"If I fall in the water. What if my jacket falls off?"

"You're not going to fall in the water. You would have to drive off the sidewalk across 10 feet of grass and rock before you would even come close to the water. Ok, now push off with this foot and put your other foot on the pedal."

We finally get going and she rides on the left side of the yellow line. The side that is heading straight into the incoming runners, bikers, rollerbladers, etc. Luckily it's near dark and the canal is nearly deserted.

"Kylie you are supposed to stay on the right side of the line."

"I don't want to fall in the water."

Then she weaves. From one side of the sidewalk to the other.

"Try to go straight."

She giggles.

Tom is running in front of her, turning around, running backward.

"Follow Daddy." I tell her.

She giggles again then slams on her brakes. Tom comes to her to help her get started.

"Is there a such thing as bats, daddy?"

And so it begins again. . . .

When my cousin who is 10 years older than me was visiting with her family this summer, after having a chance to get to know the real Kylie, she commented to one of my friends, "I remember Kelli as a little girl at Grandma's house. She acted just like Kylie."

"What?? No way." I say.

But my friends laugh and grab onto that statement. Now everytime Kylie acts up around them they say, "she's just following after her Mama!"

Could it be? Did I act like that?

Every once in awhile, when I throw responsibility to the wind and forget about that ever ticking clock that is telling us we are way past bedtime, I'll find myself next to Kylie. . .

Gallop, gallop, turn plie'. . .all while making fish faces.

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