These days, Kathleen is in full “preteen” mode. It’s more of a character she plays than anything (though I’m not sure that she knows where the character ends and she begins). She is so done with everything. She hates unicorns. She hates school. There is ever so much eye rolling. Most recently she has taken to saying “I hate you” rather than “I love you” when I give her a hug while dropping her off in the mornings. (Which I find hilarious).
What makes all of this especially fun is that Lucy feels obligated to do the opposite of Kathleen. So she has become entirely affirming and loving. And to achieve full annoyance effect, she orients this positivity directly at Kathleen. So, she openly professes her love and admiration for her sister, looking for every opportunity to give Kathleen hugs. Which Kathleen, of course, hates.
I have never enjoyed sibling rivalry more!
Kathleen was trying to take a selfie when Lucy literally dove between Kathleen and the camera to produce this picture.
My daughters and I have developed a night routine where they get into bed, then I ask them several riddles before they go to sleep. Inevitably, they always ask for one more riddle when I tell them to go to sleep.
Tonight I relented and gave them one more. “It’s ten o’clock. What time is it?”
Lucy went literal: “Ten o’clock.”
Kathleen tried a classic: “Time to get a new clock, because it’s not ten o’clock?”
Girls: “Fine what time is it?”
Me: “I gave you your extra riddle, so it’s bed time! Now get to sleep.”
Katheleen: “That wasn’t EVEN a riddle!”
Lucy: “We’ll get you for this in the morning.”
Honestly, I don’t know how they didn’t see it coming.
This morning, Lucy asked me: “Who hates justice?”
I was a bit thrown off by the question, and began wondering if this came out of political discussions we have had at home, some civics lesson at school, or an issue raised in a show she had watched. At the same time, I was proud of my daughter for taking on such a weighty subject.
I responded: “Well, there are certainly a lot of people that don’t do justice. But that is not always because they hate justice. They may think that what they are doing is just. They are just mistaken about what is right.”
Lucy blinked at me, clearly disappointed. “Justice, dad. The clothes from Justice. I think two girls in my class hate the clothes.”
Having taught ethics for a decade, I clearly have no idea what I have been talking about.
This morning we got the girls a free app that allows them to use predrawn features to create their own anime characters.
Lucy was telling me about all the options: “They have fancy dresses and suits that you can dress your character in!”
“Oh,” I responded, “So they don’t have a teeshirt and shorts that you could use to make a character that looks like me.”
Lucy looked at me. “Um, dad, all the guy characters have abs. So none of them would look like you.”
Touché little girl. Touché.