One of the times that I find the Ladybug to be at her sweetest is when I first wake her up in the morning. Flush from sleep, she still embodies just the slightest trace of the baby she once was, orienting herself, yawning wide, sighing contentedly and presenting me with a toothy grin. Some mornings I rub her back to get her moving, maybe tickle her toes or kiss her fingers, but it is all part of what I find to be an endearing ritual.
This morning I walked into her room, gently said good morning and waited for her to stir. Slowly a hand emerged from the nest of blankets and stuffed animals that cover her bed. As I reached for it, her fingers extended into a clear “Stop” signal and a little voice said “Talk to the hand.”
Bittersweet? Yes. But, more importantly, hilarious.
I couldn’t be prouder.
The Ladybug has always been a sort of quiet kid. Her brother was an early thinker, talker, reader and writer, and humorist where as the Ladybug has taken some time to come into her own. She is insightful and gentle and has a heart as big as the sun. But the wit…well, the wit has been slower to come. As you can imagine I was eager for this characteristic to appear, as sass is the defining trait of the women in my family. It’s like the basketball coach who gives birth to the child who ends up being a 4’9” tuba prodigy. To be honest, I was getting a little worried. Until this year, that is, when her humor window opened and out crawled Don Rickles. One liners, jokes and the sarcasm, oh the sarcasm - perfectly times comebacks out of nowhere that crack us up.
Naturally, we would love her madly no matter what – shy, loud, introverted, extraverted – she’s our kid and we think she’s amazing. But having this little part of me in her gives me a profound satisfaction. That is, of course, until it turns on me. As the old saying goes, “Be careful what you wish for
As long as she uses her sass for good and not evil, we’ll be fine.