Yesterday, the Gothlet turned 11. A momentous number, somehow.
I had meant to put up a post on The Day — but we were too busy doing things for her birthday, much of the day. I had just returned from my trip, and had taken the day off to spend time with her.
Part of her celebration? Having me take the corn snake, Trinity, in to school (with the definite support of her teacher) so the Gothlet could show her off and talk about her. She’s a nature girl, all right.
Hard to believe that my sweet, sunny baby girl
is now a somewhat sardonic albeit beautiful young woman.
(We see this face a lot. Besides, any time a picture is taken, the long-suffering attitude comes out. Or the patented Gothlet Death Stare.)
Besides being privy to her pithy wit (and I have misplaced the Gothlet wit and wisdom that I had written down, else I would have shared more — no doubt it will resurface and be shared in the future!), I have enjoyed seeing this self-possessed child come into her own over the last year. For most of her life, she has been somewhat overshadowed by her loud, extroverted and undeniably talented older sister. Starting with her first Halloween.
(Well, which would you rather be: Dorothy or Toto? Though you have to admit, it’s a great costume for a 6-month-old. Costumes courtesy of my mother….)
And it just kept going.
The Gothlet idolized her big sister back then, and tried to do everything she did. But when Big Sister has a Big Headstart on you — it’s hard to be a little sister who’s good at some of the same things, but not necessarily better, and definitely younger.
Well, the hero worship, not so much any more — not since The RockStar entered adolescence and started acting silly (according to the Gothlet, though she says she’d use a different word). And now the Gothlet has started to shine in her own spheres instead of trying to compete in her sister’s. She continued piano when her sister quit. And now she’s working on “Für Elise” and “Linus and Lucy” for the spring recital. She thought about taking guitar like her sister, but instead took up drums after trying viola. She’s a great drummer! She’s taking more dance than her big sister, and is particularly good at tap (it must go along with the drumming). She’s the studious one. And the saver. (She counted coup on her spendthrift big sister when she saved all her money from two birthdays and one Christmas plus some odd jobs, and had enough to buy an iPod touch all herself. Her sister is SO jealous.)
And she’s always been the artist of the family, the intuitive and creative, introspective one. The crafty one, too. Both girls know how to knit: I taught them at the same time when they asked, though they didn’t do much with it at that point, then Maddie asked again a year or two later. This time she wanted me to teach her Continental, the way I knit, instead of English, the way I’d taught them first (which is the way their after-school Knitting Club teacher knit). She learned that way and was the first of the two to actually finish a project. She also got my mother to teach her to crochet. (Which I don’t really know how to do.) This is the girl who made us all laptop computers with attached mice out of paper, tape and yarn when she was 4 or so. We used to have to ration her tape….
So, happy birthday, my funny, witty, creative Gothlet! Eleven’s a great year! And you’ve been waiting to be not-a-kid for a long time. I think you’re kind of an old soul anyway, but welcome to young womanhood.
Just remember not to use that sarcastic tongue on your mother, hmmm?