February 4, 2009

Thing 1 and Thing 2

They say that comparisons are odious. Especially between children. But I can't seem to help but compare mine. Not in a "Why can't you be like your brother" kind of way though. It's more of a "wow, OK, that's a new one!" kind of way. My two, darling, lovely children, who look startlingly like one another despite the 4 year age difference, are so vastly different that it sometimes takes my breath away.

Briton couldn't wait to get out of diapers and was potty trained before he could really say that he needed to pee and at an extremely early age (20 months!). Evie, who I know very well can hold it and pee on command (because she holds it when she sits on the potty and then pees on the floor smirking at me as I say, "Now don't pee!") Does NOT want to be a big girl and does NOT want to wear panties, not even princess ones.

Briton is game to try most foods and always has been. At two and a half he would ask for goats cheese because he liked it best. Evie eats four things. Yogurt, applesauce, oatmeal and bread. (or any combination of them, but still! And they are all shades of brown....boring)

Briton, at 6 1/2 could care less what he wears. I hand him a bundle of clothes, he puts them on without even looking. Evelyn has been opinionated on this subject for a good 6 months already. She would wear a tutu every day if I let her, (and most days I do, why fight it?) will NOT leave the house without a hat with a flower on it the size of her head and wants to pick out everything I put on her. Today she came downstairs fully dressed. Red and white striped tights. her fluffiest pink tutu-which looks more like a square dancing skirt than a tutu really- Pink glittery tennis shoes. A dinosaur shirt (a show of solidarity for her Brother, no doubt) and a brown, camel hair vest. Oh, and a pink hat with a giant pink flower on it. I think people think I'm crazy to let her wear these things but to be honest, I love it. It's endearing and cute and I know there will come a day when she doesn't' want to be a sweet little tutu girl and I'll miss it, so I let her go out in whatever she wants. Hell, I used to go to school dressed as Princess Lea (the white robe version, not the plasticised bikini version, thank goodness) and I turned out normal, well, sort of normal.

They do both like puzzles, and pretending to be cats. I guess they share some common DNA (besides the looks!)

The most interesting difference between my children though, is in the lovey department. Briton didn't really ever have on. He had a blanket that he sort of loved if he remembered. And at about age three he started carrying around a black and white stuffed cat named Millie, and it was a lovey for a while, but not in the "I must have this or I CANNOT SLEEP!" way. The kid could fall asleep anywhere or stay up all hours and have no problems. He was the ideal child while we were globe trotting. There was nothing that he really HAD to have to be satisfied with life. His sister on the other hand....

Evie has been obsessed with her lovey since she was a few months old. And by obsessed, I mean that the only nights we have spent without it were the (three) times that she LOST it and I had to go find a replacement one. The last time she lost it we were in Washington DC for the weekend and I had to call the company that made them and have them tell me where in DC they were sold. Then I rushed out and bought two so I had a back up. Of course, she found the back up, tucked away on a high shelf in her closet (I have a sneaking suspicion that her brother helped her with that) and now she has to have them both. I should go out and buy a back up back up, but can't deal with the idea that she will start carrying around three at a time. Thankfully they are small, just a little 10 inch square blanket with a lambs head on one corner, so they are easily portable.

Then over Christmas we decided to get rid of the pacifier, which was really not as big of a deal as I had feared, and she started adding to the loveys. It's like the song "There was an old woman who swallowed a fly". She keeps adding things and none of them get taken away. First it was the two loveys. (which, by the way, she calls Yubby ) Then it was a pink blanket and the two lovies. Then the baby doll, the pink blanket and the two lovies. The rabbit, the baby doll, the pink blanket, the two lovies. A pink elephant, the rabbit, the baby, the blanket the lovies. Another rabbit, the elephant, the first rabbit, the baby, the blanket, the lovies.... This morning she came down (fully dressed) clutching TWO baby dolls, the pink elephant, TWO rabbits (which she now calls "rabbit" and "more rabbit") the blanket and the lovies. The bundle is so large she can no longer see over it. And yet, every morning she gathers them up from her bed and insists on carrying them down stairs where she puts them all into one of the living room chairs and makes a nest for cartoon time.

I don't know if it's a boy-girl thing or a first and second child thing or just a personality thing, but it mystifies me that my experiences as a mother to each of them is so different. No less wondrous, just different. And to be honest, I wouldn't have it any other way.