Well it sure aint me. Or Darren. Bella (otherwise officialy known as Zarahemla Bella-Louisa Storm Young) is nearly two. But shes flexing her power muscles already. You can hear her high pitched scream all the way down to the main road. (as the neighborhood will surely attest) She has an extensive vocabulary which she uses with great skill and dramatic effect...
"NO! You BAD Zachie"
"Jade - come make it, come make my tutu buba" ( translation - please dear brother can u make me a bottle of milk.)
"Zio make house, make house for Bella" (translation - please amazing creative sister can u build me a complex playhouse using all the cushions on mums sofa, 6 sheets from the linen cupboard, several clean bathtowels, all the pots and pans and some water and crackers for playhouse snacks)
"Dada - come moe. HUrry up. Come moe NOW." ( Father dearest can u please put aside everything you are doing which was of no consequence anyway and come lie down on this bed next to me to help me go to sleep because its ridiculous to assume i can fall asleep without you here so i can poke my fingers into your eyes while loudly proclaiming my cleverness as i name every piece of yr face...NOSE! EYES MATA! MOUTH! TICKLE TALIGA!)
She is a consummate actress - turning on the waterworks with great dramatic effect when needed. Mum threatens to sasa her if she doesnt stop jumping on the bed? Eyes fill with tears, heaving sobs wrack her body "Daaaaaaaad see bad mummy!" You wont let her run outside naked with the puppies? "Mummy pleeeeease, Bella go outside? Pleeeeease?" (more bone crushing sobs)
She even has the nerve to mock the dreaded authority figure of all authoritarian figures....Uncle Cam. He was here tonight when she was refusing to put on her nappy. ( a new phase shes in - wants to run around butt naked everywhere. Hope she outgrows it before she hits adolescence.) He gives her the stern, loud censurious voice,"BELLA - STOP THAT. PUT ON YOUR PANTS NOW!"Ha. Did she falter? Did she quake? Did she scamper for refuge into a bunny rabbit burrow? No she did not. She looked at me. She grinned as if to say...'who does this silly billy think hes kidding? Doesnt he know I am the princess of this palace and NOBODY tells ME what to do or where to go?" And then she wrinkled her nose, scrunched her eyes, poked out her tongue and said "No 'Am!" And garnished it all with a giggle.
Okay - so i confess i laughed. It was funny. And I admit, somebody around here is spoiling this child rotten. But it aint me. I think its her father. Its his fault. Or maybe its the other four fantabulous childrens fault. After all - they're at her beck and call all day indulging her every whim. And i know with dreadful certainty, that there will come a day when i will rue her being sooooo spoilt - probably when shes 19 and comes home to announce loudly that shes fallen in love with a wonderful boy (who she met two weeks previously) and shes getting married to live happily ever after - a day of doom when i will shake my head and tear out my hair and ask the universe, why? Why is this child not listening to me!?But in the meantime, she continues to wrap us all around her chubby little fingers.
When she smiles at me with a face covered in gluten-free bread and honey. Bread made with rice flour that took her big brother several hours to hand grind. And her mother another hour to bake. And she announces with great delight - "Nice! You make it for Bella mum. Nice!" I melt. And love her some more.
When her dad takes a broken old tricycle and makes it like new, fashioning a new wheel out of a piece of wood and doing other such intricate things with all manner of power tools and she rides it around the house with peals of laughter. Adn then comes to pat him on the arm and announce with great delight - "You good dada. You make it! You good dada." He melts. And loves her some more.
Yup. Whos da boss of the Young house? The Youngest Young. Zarahemla Bella Louisa Storm.