Thursday, January 6, 2011

The conformist and the opinionated one

It's fascinating watching the kids grow up.  It seems like their personalities grow stronger with every passing hour.  Which is exciting and terrifying all at once. And I never cease to be amazed at how two kids in the same home with the same genetics can be SO very different.

Ethan is my rule-follower and people-pleaser. In a big way. He wants to follow procedures and do things in the same order and have things just so.  All the time.  A few minutes ago he freaked out because he looked in the kitchen and two of the knives were missing out of the knife block. I had to fish them out of the dishwasher and wash them off and replace them before he was happy. I didn't even know he knew about the existence of our knife block.

And when Ethan's playing, he wants things done just so.  He just decided to play "baseball", which of course means he has to wear a hat.  And if he's wearing a hat, then Baby needs to be wearing a hat. That's pretty much how it always works- whatever Ethan wants to do, he's desperate for Vivian to do as well. Everything.

Which is where their personality differences make things complicated. Because Baby does not like to conform or follow the rules. She has opinions about what she should be doing and what she should be wearing or reading or looking at. And she makes herself heard. Very loudly. I'm thrilled that I'm raising a brave, outspoken daughter, but it does raise a few challenges in her relationship with her brother.

So right now, Ethan's chasing Vivian around the house with her pink Mariner's cap, saying "Baby! Wear hat!" and begging her to please put it on. She's having none of it. She's shrieking and running away and shaking her head and acting like the hat is radioactive.  Poor Ethan.

I have so many friends pregnant right now with their second children, and I just laugh. They have a whole new (mostly fun and very enlightening!) road ahead of them. :)

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