I’ve written a lot about the girls and their exploration of the meaning of sisterhood. Their ups and downs are fascinating to me. It’s the intangible of the sister dynamics that keep me watching and wondering how it will all turn out. The never-ending saga of will they be friends or will they forever be at each other’s throats. The line between love and hate is so fine.
Throughout the pendulum swing, the girls have perfected the art of the fight. On one side, Riley, who has always been surprisingly and infuriatingly stubborn. It’s not her fault really. It’s genetic (thanks, Dad). On the other side, Maddie, the sweet little girl whose highs match her lows and who independently taught herself how to close-fist punch at the tender age of fifteen months.
Each day, the opponents meet and decide what the day’s fights will look like. It is an art, of course. The give and take of given moods.
Some days, the octaves reach levels so high the ringing stays in my ears for hours.
Some days, the death grip around the poor stuffed animal caught in the crossfires cannot be peeled off by even the strongest of moms.
Some days, it’s a mere passing exchange with a peaceful resolution.
Some days, Maddie returns with a chunk of Riley’s hair in her hands and proudly displays her trophy to me.
Some days, Riley forgets her size advantage and tackles Maddie like a pro football player taking out a peewee player.
But, this last Friday, I witnessed what will be my very favorite fight.
The scene: We were returning from a spring scrimmage college football game. The girls were in the back seat in what appeared to be a good mood. Maddie, who has been working very hard on potty training declared, “Me pee.”
Riley, picking up on an opportunity, looks at her slyly and says, “I have to pee.”
Maddie, not missing a beat, returns her sly glance, stating “Me poop.”
Riley, acknowledging the comeback, confidently retorts, “I have to poop and pee.”
Maddie, irritated that this momentous occasion was being taken from her, pounds on her chest and insistently growls, “Me poop. Me pee.”
Riley, shocked by her sister’s defiance and in full Oh-no-she-didn’t mode pronounces, “I pee all day!”
Yes, dear readers, family, and friends, the art of the fight has been perfected.