Having my two sons before my daughter has dramatically highlighted for me the differences between raising a boy and a girl. My daughter cares far more about what she wears and how she looks than my boys do. (So much worry about shoes at three!) She also is far more concered about being clean.
I read before havign Lily that girls mature faster than boys and I think that is true as well. Lily seemed the understand the concept of "you can get it yourself" far sooner than her brothers.
But perhaps the biggest difference of all: HOLY CRUD can little girls scream.
E got a new toy airplane and was putting it together. Lily came over to see and soon an argument erupted.
Lily: It's Andrew! Andrew!
E: Mommy! Lily is trying to name my new airplane!
Lily almost always plays downstairs in our house, so when I didn't see her I walked upstairs to see if she was playing in her room. The light was off, so I stopped and called out "Lily, where are you?"
As I stood by her door, UPSTAIRS in our house, a soft voice whispered from the dark in her room: "I'm downstairs."
E tries to stay awake as long as he can so when he's in bed at night he doesn't sit still or stop talking. Occasionally this means he is still talking when he is more-than- half asleep.
E: Grandma, I just saw a man in the light.
G: A man in the light?
E: He was very, very small and very, very nice.
G: What did he look like?
E: He kind of looked like a angel...or maybe a bunny.
The family went to a local theme park that has a bobsled roller coaster. As we got closer and closer to the front of the line, Ryan started to get very nervous, especially as the noise grew louder and louder. We kept telling him it would be fun and not too scary. It wasn't working though, so E interceded to help his brother.
E: Ryan, just close your eyes and imagine you're at home.
Despite E's efforts, Ryan didn't make it on, at least this time.
I still believe the best treatment for autism is awesome siblings.
E heard Michael Jackson's "Bad" on the radio and, for several days, danced around the house, doing the moonwalk (poorly) and singing "I'm bad...I'm bad!" He answered questions with "Because I'm bad...I'm bad." He even made a stick puppet at school and did a word bubble attached to it so the puppet was saying "I'm bad."
He explained to me that "Daddy, bad sometimes means cool."
I was trying to get everyone ready for school but no one was cooperating. I lost my temper more than I should have and stormed away. A few moments later, Ryan (always the diplomatic one) approached me sitting at my computer and started to lightly rub my back.
R: You're being fired, Daddy, so I have to fire you.
I have three children: Ryan (12), Ethan (9) and Lily (6). One is autistic, one gifted and one adopted. This is a record of some of the amazing things they say and do. I try to stop and look around at least once a day.