I think my daughter has reached the age of reason. This morning when I woke her up, I told her to pick out some clothes and put them on. This is kind of a new thing for us, as I usually pick out what she's going to wear while she lounges in bed and chit chats with me. So she's all, "I have to pick out my clothes every day lately!" and I'm all "Me too!" and she's all, "But you're fourty and I'm nine." and I was all, "Nine is plenty old enough to pick out shorts and a T shirt."
She then picked out a totally reasonable outfit, and came into the kitchen where I was making her lunch and her breakfast. She was on the verge of tears as she said, "I don't want to grow up! I want to stay nine forever!"
My poor baby! I told her I could see that she was very serious about this and I was bummed for her because time was going to march on and she was going to have to get older whether she wanted to or not. Then I said, "and there are so many wonderful things about getting older and becoming a grown up!" And she was all, "Like what?"
uh... um... well... uh...
Gentle readers, she stumped me. I stood there staring at her with a half-hearted smile on my face and couldn't come up with one single thing about being a grown-up that was better than being nine. The seconds of silence felt like hours, and I got more and more depressed, and finally I said, "You can eat whatever you want, whenever you want!" Which, of course, is only true if you want to have a liver transplant and hen drop dead of heard disease and hour later. At least that's how it would go for me, trust me.
Then I just started making shit up. "You get to go to college which is awesome, and you get to find fulfilling work, and fall in love and have a baby which is just the best thing ever!" The last part is true for me, having a baby was the best thing ever, but college was only so-so and I have yet to find fulfilling work, and being in love is fine, but it has very little to do with actual marriage.
So, for today, it sucks being a parent. My job is to prepare her for the world by making her do her homework and making her pick out her own clothes and adding more and more responsibility and independence, but I just want her to be nine forever so she doesn't have to have her heart broken by a stupid stinky boy, and pay bills, and get up early for a sucky job, and eat vegetables.
I'll let her clean toilets, though, I'm okay with that.