Friday, August 29, 2008

I may not recover from this...

My little girl has turned 3. Sweet Sister Goldenhair is continuing to grow up. I have given both my girls strict instructions to stay little forever, but they pay me no heed. And while SG was so good at being two, I am forced to recall that three was a more challenging for age for Miss B. And so it seems to be going for SG.

What makes the terrible threes so terrible is that it's harder to figure out why they are so upset now. They can communicate so much better than when they were two, but still they fuss. You are able to give them a little more freedom, but still they melt down. They are mastering new skills and abilities, but still they scream.

I. Am. Tired.

SG has entered her threes in the fine tradition established by her sister: kicking and screaming. And it never ceases to instill a bit of awe in me that while I seem to be the meanest mom in the world to her at times, I am still the one who can hold her close and calm her down. I hug her tightly and tell her I love her. And her response is, "No." I repeat that I love her and that I know how good she can be, and she soon settles.

Sometimes this calming only works after banishment to the bedroom or corner. Then I am met with a red-eyed, tear-stained face when she apologizes. We always hug and kiss (and she will usually use this opportunity to wipe her snotty nose on my shoulder). While the end result is nice, everything before that is pretty rough.

And my girls have begun to butt heads. Their relationship seems to have gone from mutual admiration to mutual exasperation. SG loves to mimic, and it would seem that nothing drives Miss B crazier than to be copied. And it would seem that nothing drives *me* crazier than to hear the girls fight. Someone almost always ends up in tears.

This sibling rivalry is what I have most dreaded since giving birth to SG. I knew it would come. I just hope it never goes beyond superficial annoyances like copycats and tattletales. I want my girls to be friends as well as sisters. I want them to care for each other and be there for each other. If I can't have them stay little forever, then is friendship too much to ask?