Sunday afternoon I was having a little lie down when Miss4 decided to join me.
“Ouch!” I said, coming back rather suddenly from the edge of what could have been a very pleasant nap. “Hey! Please stop hitting me in the head with the lightsaber.”
If I was feeling a little cranky about being used as bantha fodder, I soon got over it because Miss4 crawled into bed beside me, patted my nearly concussed head and whispered, “I love you, Daddy.”
You can’t stay cranky at four year olds.
“I love you too, sweetheart.”
But she wasn’t even done yet.
“I love you, Daddy, and you’re my favourite,” she whispered, and despite the need for medical attention from cranium specialists I actually grinned.
“Don’t tell anyone,” I said, “but you’re my favourite too.”
I usually add ‘for a 4 year old’ to the end of this sentence or say ‘you’re my favourite Emily’ because you can’t be seen to have favourites. But I was recovering from a serious head injury so let’s say I forgot.
But Miss4 wasn’t even done yet – she wanted to add a cherry on top.
“You’re my favourite because you sparkle.”
Made no sense, but I took it…
…straight to my wife when I got out of bed. I wanted to deposit this one in the ha ha bank.
“Tracey, I don’t want to upset you,” I said, my face betraying just how big a lie that was, “but Em just told me I’m her favourite.”
“That’s okay,” said Tracey rather glibly. “She told me the same thing earlier this morning.”
“Don’t be upset,” I went on, pressing how much I didn’t want that while simultaneously waiting anxiously for her to collapse into my arms from mental anguish. “There’s nothing shameful about being the number two parent.”
“I’m not making this up,” insisted Tracey. “I’m her favourite. She told me.”
“I can tell you’re upset,” I said, feigning sympathy while ignoring her pathetic attempts to lie her way past the truth, “but I’m her favourite.” I prepared myself to bring out the deal maker, or as I felt sure Tracey would come to think of it, the heart breaker. The comment that was so damn unlikely you just know there’s no way it was made up by an adult. “She held my hand and told me so, and she even said why.”
I was paused for effect. That was a mistake because Tracey filled the gap with words of her own.
“Me too,” insisted Tracey. “She told me it was because I sparkle. How cute is that? What did she tell you?”
Nothing too original, apparently.
Still, I’m betting she never lovingly hit Tracey on the head with a lightsaber – but I’ll keep that under my hat because it’s rude to skite and (as of very recently) I’m not in the business of trying to make my wife feel jealous.
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“Raising a family on little more than laughs.”