Katie is my third daughter and Katie is great.
Katie is smart. Like scary smart.
I’ve always secretly wished I’d married someone dumber than I was and had dumber kids. It would be nice for people to nod in respect at me because of my intelligence rather than what they do now:
Smile sympathetically at my wife and girls for having to do all the thinkin’, then address me very slowly and use short words I might comprehend.
“Hellooo there Coooorrreeeeyyy. What kind of coffeeeee would you like? Do you knoooow what coffeeeee is?”
When Katie was little she bought a pair of fake glasses with her own money because it made her appear more intelligent to normal people, possibly to speed up conversations that take too long when one is gauging the intellect of the child they’re talking to.
“I’m smart. Get to the point. I don’t have all day.”
Now it could be said when she was young she took great care of her brain, but sometimes walked around the house for the better part of a day with breakfast on her face.
Someday she’ll run a big company and pay interns to wipe her face for her, she has better things to do like solve world hunger.
I knew early on I had a Fact Checker on my hands. One of my daughters might ask something like “Dad, why does the sun rise in the morning?”. I’d do the typical dad fumble and start in with “Well you see, um, it’s not so much the sun rising as maybe the earth spinning (or something) and… um… solar winds? Hot air rises?” and finally land on “Maybe it’s magic?”
Katie, reading at levels obviously above mine would pipe in with the real answer: “Actually, dad, it’s ____ and _____.”
Wouldn’t be so bad if she’d keep the lecture out of her vocal tone, but whatever… at least there was a real answer to the question.
She has a thirst for understanding how things work. She used to put little mechanical projects together just because she wanted to see if she could. She made a mouse trap with a motor she stripped from some model. It actually had a sliding trap door with a pressure switch that triggered the motor by a mouse stepping on a piece of cardboard in the floor.
Electrically and mechanically sound. Made out of cardboard and string and her brain powers.
She knows people too.
I caught her when she was way too young going around holding a plate marketing “Feed starving leprechauns” and was collecting donations from the Venue dream team during setup.
She meant feed herself of course: Kathleen Siobhan Kope, the Irish Leprechaun.
Points for originality. Hard to give a kid heck for something you wish you’d have thought of yourself as a child but lacked the brains or gumption to try.
Katie goes to a school in town which is great, but has the growing pains of a large middle school. Like every place, there are kids experimenting with stuff that’s not great. I asked her about it one time and if kids bad language/ exposure to immorality/ substances/ whatever bothered her.
“Not really. That’s dumb.”
Fair enough. She’s not wrong either.
Some kids are very susceptible to being talked into something by a bad group of friends. Not Katie. She doesn’t care what you think if what you think is stupid. She just tosses your opinion into the “Doesn’t Make Sense” box and moves on with her life.
I love having a sharp child around who keeps us all on our toes. It makes us all that much better, we actually have to do our homework and not lazy-parent, which is too easy to do these days.
If you make a rule it’d better make sense around Katie. Now when a child is small obedience is the deeper lesson until they are mature and have proven themselves capable of good decision making… meaning doing what they’re told is far better than agreeing with what they’re told before doing it. My folks didn’t care if I agreed with them or not, or even if I liked them or not, they were too busy being great parents and making decisions that were the best for me and expecting me to obey.
Nowadays it’s like “You’re five years old! YOU decide if you’re a boy or a girl or a sixty five year old unicorn or want to be sexually active! Oh and your pants are on backwards again…” Back when I was five it was like “You’d BETTER decide not to punch your brother again or Mom will END YOU!!!”
But as children get older and move out of the discipline years and parents become coaches, our decisions and rules had better stand up to the scrutiny of getting good results or they’ll lose respect for us.
Meaning… your position should not allow you to escape the good principles you’re trying to get them to live by, and a rule had better make sense.
“Dad” she asked one day “most kids in my class have a phone. Why am I not allowed one?”, this in something ridiculous like grade 5???
“Well” I replied “most kids will be addicted to pornography by the time they’re in grade 7 and then people like me have to deal with their addictions destroying their lives and families when they’re adults. You’re not ready to have a phone.”
“Ok” she said, and dropped it in the Makes Sense bucket. Then “What’s pornography?”…(alarmed-face emoji = great parenting opportunity).
Katie’s great. By the time she’s twenty I’ll ask her advice on things I haven’t quite understood yet because I lack her God-given intelligence, I just hope she’s on my team so I can win.
Being her dad has been, and is, a great privilege for me. Watching how she changes the world will be my reward:)
Katie is my third daughter and Katie is great.