Sunda is hilarious.
On Sunday, Jake and Kya were napping and Sunda was watching a cartoon. I sat down on the couch to put my feet up and flip through a magazine. Sunda saw me sit down and immediately said, "Mama, can you read this book to me?" If you're not a mom, you can't imagine the range of thoughts that go through your head at this moment. The first reaction is: "Awwww, man...I just sat down." The second is, "Of course I will, because I am terrible if I don't." Somewhere down the line is, "You know what? It's not going to kill her to continue doing what she was doing for a few minutes while I flip through this magazine and shut off my brain. We'll read it tonight before bedtime." Eventually, that's pretty much what I told her. I must've used the words, "I'm just going to relax for a few minutes." Great idea, but not right now. Mommy needs a few minutes. "Fine." She conceded.
Not five minutes later, Sunda asked me for some juice. Usually, she can manage to pour it for herself. So, still attempting to remain on the couch for as long as possible, I said to her, "Why don't you get it yourself? You can even pour some for Mommy too." "No Mama," she said. "That's a good idea, but I can't get it right now, because I just need to chillax for a few minutes." Touche. Punk. ;)
Amazing that she has picked up so many of my habits. I notice that our relationship works very similarly to any other kind of relationship. When I drop what I'm doing and pay attention to her, she drops what she's doing and pays attention to me. If I answer her the first time she calls my name, she answers me the first time I call her name. I am not advocating some kind of liberal parenting style that says that we should be friends to our kids first and foremost. No ma'am. I still believe fully that I am in charge, and that what I say goes. But mutual respect goes a long way too.
Yesterday Sunda "helped" her Daddy fix the truck in the warehouse. She came back to the house filthy. Before I could turn around she was on the bed, cuddling and cooing Kya. I said, "Sunda, did you wash your hands?!" She looked up at me all like, "you are so slow."
S: "I washed my hands with soap, and I took off my pants so I didn't get your bed dirty."
Oh great, of course you did.
M: "By the way, Sunda, do you know where the diaper cream is? I can't seem to find it."
S: "Yes Mommy, I've seen it, here, I'll show you." (She went right to it and pulled it from an obscure place in Kya's shelves of clothes. Okay, so she probably put it there in the first place.)
I can't wait for her to show her little sister how to be as helpful and delightful as she is. :)