Turning the Corner

Dearest Kate: You are 4 years old today.

It’s the end of year 3, and thank goodness. It’s been a tough one, not made any easier by my pregnancy and your brother’s birth. You are, now and forever, my middle child.

You walk the line between dependent and independent, breaking free and holding back in equal measure. You often want company when you are going to the potty, yet you will attempt to pour yourself a drink on your own. That latter usually ends up messily. I am trying to be patient.

But I understand it’s hard to wait, especially when I am otherwise occupied, which happens so much these days. I hope you will be patient with me and with Michael, and know that when I am able, I have all my attention for you.

You are a wonderful child and a frustrating child. You are sweet and goofy and loving, and you love to make people laugh. You are also volatile and strong willed. You want to be included in everything, but I have also watched you play on your own. You are nurturing in play, tending to the needs and comforts of whichever dolly or stuffed animal you have selected for the day.

You are exactly everything a little sister should be. That is affectionate and playful, as well as frustrating. You know exactly which buttons to press with Flora. You are a curious and somewhat careless big sister, always wanting to see your brother and know his where abouts, but tending to squeeze a little to hard when holding his hand.

You are Kate, a personality onto yourself. And I love you so very, very much. Happy Birthday, my Kate.