Thursday, March 20, 2014

Never compare your children

Elsie used to rub her feet together while she was feeding, sleeping, resting... Molly sits with her feet neatly crossed at the ankle.

Elsie only ever sneezed five times in a row. A-choo, a-choo, A-Choo, ACHOO ACHOOOO! When Molly was tiny, she always made an 'oooh' noise after a sneeze, whether it came out properly or not. Ach-oooooh. Usually followed by a grin.

Elsie hated tummy time and screamed until we turned her the right way up. She never crawled but insisted on us supporting her while she walked and ran about from such an early age that by the time she got to 11 months she was walking on her own. Molly loved tummy time and quickly got the hang of rolling, pushing up and then crawling, although she insisted on sticking one leg out and alternating her knee with her foot, only bringing both knees in to squeeze through tight spots. At 11 months old she just started walking with the aid of a toddle truck. Her walking was stiff and awkward, unlike her crawling which was faster than most people can run.

Some things I remember Elsie doing only when I see Molly doing it - like dropping her plate on the table so it spins... or outraged mini tantrums when something is taken away from her or someone dares to tell her 'no!' But usually Elsie's explorations and Molly's achievements awaken a sense of wonder, a sense that this little unique person has figured something out all by herself and done it in a way that nobody else has ever done before.

I always assumed I'd have a boy and a girl. I have a brother. Marek has a sister. That's how it goes. Having two girls though has really made me experience the obvious truth that there are not just girls and boys. A child is a being, finding her way through life and bringing her own perspective to a path well trod by other boys and girls. These two little people came from the same parents, are treated as equally as possible and yet are more different than I ever could have expected.