Monday, March 03, 2008

"She likes what I like, but I don't want her to!"

Now that our littlest has successfully navigated through her 5th birthday and has officially turned the corner from toddler-dom into kid-dom (although she's been paying for a Kid's ticket at Disneyland for three years now...ripped), I'm looking forward to seeing what earthly things and otherworldly interests her quickly forming brain starts to zero in on as igniting her solid rocket boosters.

Actually, there's no one more anxious to see PK find her own way in the surrounding world of wonder than her bigger sister, who for months now has been making a point of letting us know that it would be more acceptable to her if the youngest member of our not-quite Brady Bunch would find her own interests instead of "stealing" hers.

I remember as a kid how it seemed to bug my big brother whenever I would take an interest in something he found interesting...with the exception of the original Star Trek tv series -- I was two years younger than my Trekker brother so a lot of the subtleties in the plot lines of the show were lost to me then. Or perhaps I just didn't have enough raging pre-teen hormones to appreciate the mini skirt and tight uniform of Yeoman Rand (yowza!).

Seems that same scenario has been playing out in our home for awhile now as PK's interests in all things cultural (pop and otherwise} have more or less mimicked her big sister.

Elevating the interests of an older sibling to Zeussian status is all perfectly normal behavior, I get that. However there are days when it gets to the point of a heightened sense of frustration for our first born, and during these times we usually steer our discussion on the subject in one of three directions...

S usually taps into her Hallmark Greeting Card commercials vibe and launches into her "Someday you'll look back on the days when your little sister thought you were the best thing since direct port nitrous injection, four core intercoolers, ball-bearing turbos and titanium valve springs...(okay, I added that but you get the point), and you'll long for those days."

A good fallback is usually the "Point out the differences" argument where we walk up to their respective bedrooms and start pointing out the differences between the two...C - blue room, PK - pink.
C - sea landscape theme, PK - dollhouse village.
C - softball gear, PK - soccer stuff.
C - Hannah Montana posters, PK - Hannah Montana posters
...uh oh...ummm, moving on.

My favorite is the "She's your little sister and looks up to you, so you have a responsibility to make sure her interests are nurtured," line of discussion. I know, I know, spoken like a true younger sibling channeling that old "it's not my fault...he/she is older and should have known better," routine. What can I say, old habits die hard.

As you might imagine, my methodology frustrates C the most, especially when I launch into some boring diatribe about how I copied everything my brother/her Uncle Brian used to do, say, think, and wear and how that behavior, however annoying it may have been, eventually led to the development of the person whom she loves dearly and calls "Daddy."

To which she smugly replies, "thanks Uncle Brian."

8-years old going on 16. I am so not ready.

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