This Girl, My Girl.
Chubby legs clad in bright tights, so strong as she climbs for a better view.
Always wanting in on the action.
Suggesting we make soup. Helping every step of the way, chopping, stirring, eating.
Demanding her turn and her portion.
This girl wants to help all the time.
Even when it’s not really help. Definitely only on her terms.
A gap-toothed smile. A mop of blonde hair, pushed out of her face when it annoys her.
A determined look on her face, she knows what she wants. She knows how to get it.
She runs towards me when I collect her, eyes dancing with delight she calls my name.
She’s my baby again, just for a minute.
Claiming her territory, her place in Mammy’s arms, on Mammy’s lap.
Daddy gets a big hug and a hurrah when he arrives in the door.
She asserts her independence. “I do” “Meee”. Getting louder if there’s anyone else talking, especially a brother.
Demanding more of everything except cucumber or broccoli which get removed from her plate.
Denying her cot, insisting on the “big girl bed”.
Refusing the clothes that are put on her, taking them off.
Drawing, colouring, insisting on company while doing it.
Dragging a baby doll with her, getting annoyed when its hat falls off, seeking it to be fixed again.
This girl loves to clean her teeth and wash her hands. Over and over, splashing and sloshing.
This girl likes at least three books to be read at bedtime, shouting “more” and offering special requests “Zoo!”, “Bear!, “Peppa!”
Refusing to wear any pyjamas except the “Leh ih go, go” ones (aka Frozen) every night.
Cutting teeth. Coughs that keep everyone awake most of the night. Middle-of-the-night Calpol and cuddles.
Middle of the night Calpol and cuddles Image: Sinead Fox
This girl makes us smile. This girl makes us laugh.
This girl hits and kicks when she’s annoyed, then gives unrequested hugs to all moments later to win us back.
This girl has a snotty nose and rosy cheeks and is up all night.
She rifles through the cutlery drawer flinging knives, forks and spoons on the floor.
She upturns my handbag and goes through my wallet laying my cards out one by one, counting my coins, one two, two, two.
She says “ho ho ho” when she sees anything red or white and appropiate animal noises. She makes cups of tea all day long, real and imaginary.
She bursts into song, “Eh It GOOOO”, “Dinga Bells”.
She wants her own DS and the moment her brothers leave theirs unattended she has it.
She loves her clothes already, oohing and aahing over new ones, patting her dress down and doing a twirl to show it off.
She ‘s crazy about shoes and if she sees her birdie boots all else must stop until they are on her feet.
This girl will only be this age for a short time and then she’ll be bigger, but she’ll always be my baby. My baby girl. My girl.