My 6-year-old daughter is wicked, observational smart. While the older one has always been complacent to take information as it comes, the younger one pushes the issue.
Not only has she asked how my mother died, but she also wanted to know how I felt when she died. Recently, I’ve caught her twisting/sucking on a piece of hair, and especially since it was a habit she had as an infant, I’ve tried to stop it.
This past weekend, she looked at me exasperated and held up a fist.
“Don’t suck my thumb.” She extended her thumb.
“Don’t bite my nails.” Out went the index finger.
“Don’t pick my nose.” The middle finger followed.
“Don’t touch my privates.” (We’ve explained that it’s all right to touch one’s privates in private, but not in the classroom. “And in the bath,” she adds.)
“Don’t pick my booty.” The pinky goes up.
Out comes the other hand, and with an exasperated breath, she says: “Don’t chew on my hair.”
She raises her eyebrow and gives me a look that says, “Is that it, Mom?”
I want to throw out not to chew on her toenails either, but leave well enough alone. I’m sure we’ll be able to uncurl those last four fingers soon enough.