The Middle

Kate does not like to be alone.

Back in November, my mom bought the girls a new bedroom suite. It is lovely: dark wood, a vanity, an upright dresser — and twin beds.

Kate does not sleep in her bed. She usually sleeps with Flora, although she will sometimes find her way to our bed, or even, occasionally, the couch downstairs (especially if that’s where Dan fell asleep).

I don’t fight with her about this. If it’s okay with Flora for Kate to sleep with her, then it’s okay with me. I did try to bribe Kate to sleep in her bed. I told her if she slept in her bed for seven days in a row, I would buy her Zhu Zhu Puppies.

That lasted two days. Then she defected back to Flora’s bed, and declared, “I don’t want Zhu Zhu Puppies.” (Flora, on the other hand, would *love* Zhu Zhu Puppies; I just haven’t figured out what she can do to get one. Maybe knock off the whinging. OMG, the whinging.)

Kate doesn’t like to wait in her bedroom while I’m bathing Flora. (Yeah, that showering by herself thing isn’t working so well; she doesn’t get her hair clean enough.) She will sit on a step stool in a bathroom, with a stuffed animal, waiting for us all to go into the bedroom.

She still hates going to the bathroom by herself. Although, hilariously, when she is pooping, she will shoo me out of the room.

When I am on the couch, feeding Michael, she comes to sit on my other side, as close to me as she can get.

She won’t go upstairs or downstairs by herself. As with sleeping on her own bed, she simply says, “I’m scared.” When asked “of what?” she usually shrugs. Occasionally she says, “Stinkbugs,” which I can understand. Those ubiquitous bugs are freaky looking.

And she tells Flora, almost every morning, “I’ll miss you until you get to daycare.”

Is this a middle child/second child thing? Is it simply a Kate thing? Lay your pop psychology and your ancedotes on me!

(I was going to post the Jimmy Eat World video for their song “The Middle” because I love that song, but it’s full of teenagers in their underpants. No really. So I decided against it.)