I have been sitting in a hospital for the past 4 days. Being idle gives me time to think and read and I have been doing a lot of both.
I read an article about labeling your children...whether it's something we should do or if it's something we just can't help but do.
We have always said that Zoe is our "smart" child, while Gigi is our "terror" child. I know the terror label is so not right, but we have been working with what we have been given. Gigi's got smarts, too, though. She knows which animals are which on her animal flash cards (ostrich, kangaroo and joey, elephant, etc...)and her vocabulary is very high (I think!) She's doing good with potty training. She's a great helper and likes to role-play. She enjoys dispensing the dog food at dinner time to Lola and Madison. This is when the "terror" shows up...we must chase her down each night to get the dog food out of her mouth. A bit in the bowl, a bit in her mouth. It's all a great game to her and sometimes we just let her eat the gross, dry kibble.
Zoe is our "smart" kid, but now I'm afraid she's going to be labeled as the "sick" kid. Not at all what we had wanted for her. She's still smart..and sweet..and artistic..and well, I guess also sick. But I hope that that doesn't follow her around through her entire young life. That label is too much for anyone to handle let alone a young girl. She doesn't like attention and so being smart and sweet and artistic allows her to stay inside herself a bit. Being sick makes people look at her and look at her differently.
When the "terror" grows up we hope that she can help her sister. Not because she has been the "sick" one in the family, but because she loves her and wants the best for her. I hope Gigi doesn't grow up to resent Zoe because she might have gotten more attention because of her health issues. We also hope that Zoe doesn't grow up resenting Gigi because she didn't have to spend time in the hospital as a child, she didn't have setbacks.
A friend of mine recently wrote a short piece about an uncle he didn't get to know very well growing up and upon his death, he realized he missed out on a great and interesting life. He pondered over what could have been, what he could have gotten out of that relationship if only there was a rewind button.
I have the opposite issue...I want a fast forward button.
I want to see how this cancer turns out for my daughter... for my daughters. I want to see if they can overcome their labels and the obstacles ahead. I want them to be amazing and unique and a not-to-be-forgotten duo.
The Smart and The Terror Shall Conquer the World...while holding hands and giggling.