Marie is a girl.
Obviously, I've been aware of this for a while. From the moment she was born, I was prepared for her to be a little different from the boys. I expected that perhaps she might be more creative or chatty or, let's face it, awkward, and, indeed, she is all these things. I've done my best to treat her the same as the boys but it's happened anyway. What I wasn't expecting was the way she's turned out to be such a... well, such a girl. She covets pink clothes and sparkly jewellery. She names her toys and knows when they're sad. She carries a handbag, likes her nails painted and enters into a rapturous trance when eating chocolate. It's scary.
Mention going shopping to the boys and they instantly complain and grab hold of furniture to avoid being dragged out of the house. Mention a trip to the shops - any shops - to Marie and she bounces up and down in excitement.
If we do make it to a store, the boys fight each other, grab stuff off shelves and then hand it to me, loudly proclaiming, "I want that. Can you pay for it?"
Marie, meanwhile, fondles merchandise lovingly and says, "I really like this sparkly, pink thing. It's really lovely. Best-daddy-in-the-world-ever, please could you buy it for me? I would really like that. It would make me happy." She even pulls her face into a forlorn pout.
She doesn't always get her way but her success rate is pretty high - much higher than the boys. I need to work on hardening my heart before she's a teenager or I'm going to be in real trouble.
For now, I'm trying to fill a different gap in my parenting skills:
Hopefully I'll get the hang of it eventually. At least I'm good at coordinating her wardrobe:
Yours in a woman's world,