Red Flags or Red Herrings?: Predicting Who Your Child Will Become by Susan Engel. The book ponders whether patterns in childhood (social skills, IQ tests, behavior, etc) transition to adulthood. For me, it's been amazing to watch my kids grow just in the past five years (or less). They've changed so much in the short amount of time. We see traits that we can trace back to us, and things that are totally unique. There are so many differences between the kids, too.
When we arrived at the inflatable bouncing party palace, I was overwhelmed by the crowds, the noise, the closed-in space. Maryn, clutching to my leg, seemed to feel the same anxiety. While Brady would have been the same a couple of years ago, he literally bounced into the room, regaling anyone who would listen with stories of his birthday: "I'm FIVE now. I had a birthday on March 27th. My sister will be 3 on April 21st." We pushed our way through and Brady had his shoes off and was running from place to place so fast that I could barely keep up. Maryn wanted to go on a slide, but refused to go without me. I had to climb, half holding on for my safety, while dragging her up with me, using my feet to try to fend off attacks from other little children trying to pry their way to the top. As soon as we flew down the slide, she was hooked...yet still was unwilling to go alone. Sweet Brady volunteered, "I'll go with you Maryn", and took her by the hand and led her to the top. A different Maryn emerged. The shyness and fear was gone, and she was glowing in the attention and protection of her "big" brother. And he shined as well, becoming a gentle leader and laughing at her delight. He started saying, "Where's my sister? Come on, sister, let's go together!" which was amusing as I hadn't heard him refer to her as his sister so often. It was one of those fantastic mommy moments where all is right in the world. These same kids that can literally be at each other's throats some days were inseparable best friends. I hope that's a pattern that lasts forever.