A gesture of appreciation

Five more days before school starts again. I can’t wait. It has been fun having the kids around all the time, not having to get up early and rush them to get in school on time. But two months is long enough. Not just for me, but for them too.

They are crazy about each other. Sometimes they act like a Siamese twin. My couch is big enough to fit seven adults on it, yet the both of them sit in the same corner to watch tv. Sometimes it’s hard to make out which legs belong to who. They find it hard to share a candybar, but not to share a blanket.

But sometimes, all this extra time together makes them rebel. Against each other. Against me. Against the whole world and the whole universe. All of the sudden an angry look on Kymany’s face will make Badu cry. “She is always angry at me. She doesn’t like me.” And once that storm calms down, Kymany’s world ends in tears because her sister never wants to play with her.
I’m not the best referee. I get annoyed when they cry over small things that really don’t matter much. But it matters to them. A long time ago we agreed on a rule: we only cry when we are hurt. So when they start whining and crying over something small like a tv program that hasn’t been paused because one needed to run to the bathroom, this little nagging feeling bubbles up from inside my stomach and I tell them:” Stop crying! You are not in pain!” Of course more tears: “Yes, I am! My heart is broken and it hurts!” Oh my… Here we go again.

This morning they were playing together and I was on the couch reading a book. I was happy that they were behaving, even though I expected some shouting and crying to erupt at any time now. After a while I’ve noticed that it got quiet. Then Kymany opens the door with a big smile (I still love her dimples so much) and Badu shows up next to her, with possibly an even bigger smile. Kymany puts her left arm around Badu’s shoulder and she responds by putting her arm around Kymany’s hip. I sit there, with my book open on my lap, looking at them.

“Mommy, we want to thank you for everything you do for us and because you are the sweetest mommy in the whole wide world, we are going to do the laundry for you. You just sit there and read your book, we will take care of everything.”

And before I can tell them how sweet they are (or that they shouldn’t put colored with white laundry), they both run – with that same big smile on their pretty little faces – to the washing room and start working as a professional two-little-girls-team to get the laundry, soap and fabric softener in the machine. No arguments, no tears, no fighting. No stress.

And even though they might have poured in just a little bit too much soap and just not enough fabric softener, it’s alright. They poured a lot of love into it. And in the end, that’s all that matters


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