There’s kind of a big gap in age between our girls – don’t know if any of you have noticed… We learned a long time ago that some people plan these things, some people don’t.
We’ve gotten some interesting comments about our family structure. Most people are tactful about it, but then there’s always going to be someone like the hairdresser I had once. She was asking me about my kids, and when I said that I had a 6-year-old and a baby, she gave me this big nudge and exclaimed, “Girl, what happened to you?!”
Or my favorite, most recent one – “Are they both yours?”
Yes. They are both wonderfully mine.
And they are very different. I was reminded of this again yesterday…
We have this great toy that Anika loved when she was a toddler.
All the little passengers on the bus twirl around when it’s pulled across the floor. It makes the hugest racket, but at least I always know where my kid is…since we live in such a large house and all…and you never know where she might be playing…
Anyway, Kaylia discovered it for the first time yesterday morning, and was having so much fun with it. For her at this point, that basically means pulling all the people off and taste-testing each one. Like I said – so much fun.
Anika was watching her with great interest, and suddenly she said, “You should make the man and woman sit beside each other on the bus. Like they’re dating. Put them at the back where no one can see them.”
I didn’t respond – at all – for 2 reasons. First of all, I didn’t know what to say to that, and secondly, I was having this moment of realizing how different our girls are. Kaylia’s jamming as many toys into her mouth as she can, and Anika wants to make up romantic stories about the toys.
So we have this gap going on. We will probably be very aware of it for a long time. It will probably impact our family in very unique ways.
The thing that I love is that the gap in age between my girls is the exact gap (plus 2 months) between me and my older sister. And she was always my hero. She was the best at coming up with ideas for playing. She sewed clothes for my Barbie dolls, and she read books to me for hours. She baked treats and knew how to make Kleenx flowers for our imaginary weddings.
So I tell Anika all of that. I tell her about how much I loved having a (much) older sister, and she gets all excited about doing things with Kaylia. I think she gets the vision…
We didn’t plan for our family to be this way, but I really love it.
I love it that Anika prayed for a baby sister for 3 years. I love it that she’s the one who thought up Kaylia’s name. I love it that she clearly remembers the day Kaylia was born. I love it that she is always so excited to see Kaylia, and to cover her with kisses. I love seeing the way Kaylia’s face lights up, and how she bounces up and down when she hears Anika coming.
And maybe those things would have happened anyway, even if there was another sibling (or two!) between them, but I love the special little relationship that they have.
Ben always said, “Our family will be what it will be, and we will love it.”
And he was right. As in most things.
So we’ve got a gap, and our girls are at very different stages, but I’m finding that I love that, too!