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Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Where's Your Goat?

Sibling rivalry is high at our house.  I don't like it.  Annsley does a fantastic job of twisting the knife she just inserted into her sister's back.  Kennedi has a knack for sending her older sister "over the edge" with frustration. Doug is always reminding Annsley to not let Kennedi know where her goat is tied. Last night Kennedi was taking down Annsley's Super Bowl decorations and throwing them in the trash.  Annsley was beside herself and Kennedi was gleeful. 

Annsley was tearful and distressed about how mean her sister was and telling her daddy she didn't like her.  Doug pulled her up into his lap.  "You know, I was sure that Kennedi was going to be a boy," he told her.  Doug continued, "God told me when your mom was about 5 months pregnant that we would eventually have a boy, but this was a girl because Annsley needed a sister." 

Annsley was not impressed that her father had heard correctly from the Holy Spirit.  She just crossed her arms in a huff.  She got up and marched to the trashcan, and now she's really mad because she realizes that Kennedi has thrown away even more of her decorations.  I look at her and say, "Annsley, Kennedi is a gift from God..." and I continue with my lecture.  Annsley puts her fingers in her ears and starts singing.  Daddy Doug says to her the same thing he's been saying since she was four, "Annsley, don't let her know where your goat is tied."

Later that evening when Kennedi is taking her bath, I find Annsley filling up a ziplock bag with ice.  She has plans to tackle her sister when she is naked and force her to lie on the bag of ice.  I take her weapon from her and she marches to her room.  I find Annsley on her bed. "It's not fair." In all my motherly wisdom I say to her, "Annsley, it's a game to her.  She wants to see if what she does is going to get you upset.  You need to smile and not watch her.  Even if you don't say anything, but you snarl and cross your arms, she knows she got you.  And then she wants to take the next thing down to see if you'll react again."  Easier said than done.  It's so hard for adults to "take the high road" how can a little 7 year old who is just consumed with "now and the present" understand?  Then Annsley starts crying and says, "It's a mistake she's my sister!" 

I only know her pain too well.  Kennedi gets into her sister's stuff because she can.  Because it will upset the apple cart.  Because life is a game to her.  And not that she really wants to win, but throwing the confetti is more than half the fun.  It's who she is.  She is still tests the boundaries yet, but that will change soon.  Right now, we're working on Annsley's sense of humor.  She has very little.  Well, she actually has a lot-- it's just one sided.  She's great at dishing it out, just not very good on the recieving end. Unfortunately for Annsley, she is a lot like her mother.  Unfortunately for Annsley, Kennedi is a lot like her father.  Even today he still giggles when he thinks about doing something funny to somebody else.  Like father, like daughter!

FOLLOW UP**The next night after I typed this, I was so proud of Annsley.  Her sister was taking down yet another Super Bowl decoration to get a reaction out of her sister.  "Kennedi, does that belong to you?" I asked.  Annsley shakes my arm in an effort to get my attention.  She has this fake plastered smile on her face and says, "See Mom, I'm smiling."  Kennedi puts the decoration back and searches for a new stick to stir.  For now, though, it is a victory for my 7 year old!


Kristin said...

Hmmm...this sounds so familiar. Could Annsley be experiencing what you went through with me?!?! I love you, Big Sis! (and I'm smiling genuinely!)

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