Friday, June 27, 2008

I've Got a Teen On My Hands

Daughter graduated from preschool last Friday. She went to the same school Son went to so I couldn't help but compare. He was and still is one of the friendliest kids around but he was shy that day. His teacher had to hug him while they sang. He looked nervous in front of the people. And shy. But he made it through.

This time there were considerably more family and friends in attendance. But Daughter walked out with her class singing her little heart out. We ALL knew the words. She had been singing them daily since Christmas or so. Just like Son, I was on the verge of tears the moment I saw her. Don't ask me why. Don't know. It only lasts as long as it takes for them to all come marching in. But weepy I was and trying to control it so I can see her clearly. Two years at this school and it was time to say goodbye - again. "That's it, right," one teacher asked. "Last one?" Mr. T and I just laughed. "Don't know yet. Don't know."

The kids went through the alphabet phonetically. They sang more songs. Soon, they called her name and she walked up and got her pretend diploma. She's just so confident. Must be nice to have that confidence at the age of 4.

As a treat for her and Son who's report card was the equivalent of all A's, we went to Hershey Park.

Mr. T. and I had last been there back in 1994 or maybe 1995 when a friend of mine was graduating medical school. So the kids had not been at all and we didn't tell them they were going. We said nothing at all the whole ride until Son, who had been buried in his DS and missed the "Welcome to Hershey" sign, looked up and saw the street sign pointing right to Chocolate Ave. "We're going to Hershey Park," he said matter of factly. And then you could hear him start to smile and get excited. Daughter is still a clueless when it comes to theme parks and recognizing them by name but she got into the swing of things easily. All she wanted was to stay in a hotel and eat in a restaurant.

We stayed for the weekend and did Chocolate World the first night and the park the next day. The park was immaculate. Daughter wanted to ride everything and would have been on the coasters next to her daddy if she were at least a Twizzler size. But alas, she's only a Reese's right now and Son is a Hershey. Too short for the mega coasters. But Mr. T. has a budding roller coaster companion in her and thank God because it's not my thing to go loop-de-loop and I don't think it will be Son's either. He didn't even want to get on the big swing that went REALLY fast but made Daughter laugh.

She's a teen-ager, I tell you. I came home last night and she wanted me to polish her toenails. She had asked in the past and I'd do one toe and she'd mess it up moving around. "I can keep still," she promised. And she plops her foot on my lap to beautify her toes. We make it through so I do the other foot and blow on them. I turn her to sit on my lap. "Why do you have to hold me?"

"Because I don't want you moving around and putting nail polish on my new furniture."


So she sits, and wiggles her feet, propping them on my propped up legs so she can compare our toes. She talks about everything and nothing, telling me she's almost 5 now and she can sit still long enough so her toes dry. All I can think is how could I have ever said I didn't want a girl? She's the perfect mix of brave boy for her dad and girly girl for me. When it seems all is safe, she moves around to test her new toes. "See? I didn't mess them up! Can you do my fingers now?" Why not. She can handle anything.

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