Dear Yai Yai — And Then You Were Six

Dear Yai Yai,

I didn’t get a chance to write this on your actual birthday because I was sick. Doesn’t that just bookend nicely with your birthday last year? No? Too soon? Yeah, I thought so too.

This was a year of transitions for our whole family, and you were no exception. You’ve adapted with a mixture of grace and feral hellbeast, both generous and full of the selfishness of childhood. Some days you seem so impossibly big, wanting to be kind and loving to everyone around you. You give your brother hugs and kisses as you entertain him.

Some days — some days are harder. Some days you screech and growl, full of anger at all the things a child cannot control. You throw things in frustration and lash out at the people with whom you feel safe. You hate me but you love me.

You are crafty and always up to make crazy plans with me. You’re also a little bit of an asshole sometimes. Don’t worry, so am I. It may be genetic. But it will serve you well in life, this understanding that you are nobody’s doormat. You take no shit, and you know what you want. Unfortunately, at the age of six you don’t know how to control that spirit, you don’t know when to turn it down and see that cooperation is in your best interest. That’s where I come in. That’s when you hate me.

It’s okay. You’ll learn these rational efforts at self-preservation eventually, and I probably won’t sell you to the circus in the meantime. If I did I would have to redesign my blog’s header image, and I don’t have time for that. So you’re here for the long haul. You’re here while you navigate how to deal with your desires vs logic. Right now you want to crawl back inside my uterus, but you’ll be here when you no longer think showering with me is the best way to start your morning (oh god, please let that day come soon). You’ll be here as you learn lessons both tough and beautiful. And I’ll be right here with you.

You’ve grown noticeably taller in the last few months. You hate being called Yai Yai. You say your favorite color is now red. You have finally, finally tried a few new foods. You will eat scrambled eggs now! Rotisserie chicken! Still not a single vegetable that doesn’t end in the word “fry.” Maybe six is the year for that?

In the midst of all the growing and transitions, you are still so small. You wrap your legs around me as I carry you from your bed, your sleep-ridden head resting on my shoulder. You can’t say the “th” sound very well, substituting a “v” sound. Bother becomes bovver. I love that so. You still don’t have the spacial awareness to avoid knocking everything over. Neither do I, if I’m being honest.

So my dear Yai Yai, this is six. This is the year you lose your first tooth. The year you go to first grade. The year you continue being you. Some days are great, some days are a marathon, but you’re always the best at being Yai Yai.




Lorelei on her birthday

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