Kirstyn pulled her second tooth out tonight, and she was sitting on my lap. I loved it! She made me feel special. Go ahead and laugh! I know it sounds silly. But there’s history here.
I’ve had scattered bouts of sadness recently, thinking about all the things I didn’t teach my daughter. Things I always assumed were a mom’s job to teach. So I go on a guilt trip every time I think about the things I didn’t teach her, because it makes me feel like I wasn’t there for her.
I didn’t teach Kirstyn how to ride a two-wheeler. Derek didn’t either! She taught herself, last year in Massachusetts. I looked out my family’s dining room window, and there was Kirstyn, riding back and forth on the road in front of the house.
I didn’t teach Kirstyn how to tie her shoes. One day, I just realized she was doing it! I don’t know if anyone taught her. Knowing my girl, she probably figured it out on her own.
The other week Kirstyn braided her hair! All by herself! And then put an elastic in to hold the braid! I didn’t teach her to braid, either. She said Cindy Fisher did. (A good friend of mine, and a mom of twelve children. I used to babysit for her!)
I didn’t teach Kirstyn to pump on a swing, and I didn’t teach her to read. Not all by myself anyway! I’ve worked a lot with her, but so has Derek’s mom. (Mom H. is a former high school math teacher, so she loves to teach!) Teaching my firstborn child to read was something I really wanted to do. Probably has something to do with my love of books!
I know teeth have nothing to do with a taught skill. But I wasn’t with Kirstyn when she pulled out her first tooth! She was next door at Grammy’s. I don’t know why that made me sad. Maybe it reminded me of this major pro/con thing of living next door to Derek’s family. I know Kirstyn loves me to death, and I will always be her mom, but she also loves Grammy dearly! And yes — this is a good thing! I love that my kids can see (half) their grandparents so often. I think grandparents can play a unique role in a child’s development, and I think the special bond between a grandparent and a child is one of the best things ever! I just get jealous sometimes, when she asks every day, “Can I go up and hang out with Grammy?” It makes me question if having four children so close together was a good idea. “Are they lonely? Do they get enough attention from me?” These are things I wonder.
So tonight, when Kirstyn curled up on my lap with a mouth full of blood, I felt special. And loved. She wiggled and yanked on that bottom tooth, and all of a sudden I was holding a little girl with an even bigger hole in her mouth! She’s adorable, this sweet, independent, people-loving daughter of mine.