How I’m Raising My Girls…2.0…Brooke

My beautiful Brookie

Ahhhh! Second child! I won’t get into Brookie’s pre toddler years like I did with Alexis since all babies are pretty much the same. We fed her, kept her clean and uninjured; so far, so good!

Fun fact: Apparently Brooke was conceived on the stairs after Dina came home from a Ricky Martin concert. Never underestimate the power a gay Colombian singer has over a woman’s libido!

Going from one child to two isn’t as simple as it may seem. It’s an exponential increase! Everything becomes more hectic! Obviously the newborn can’t be unattended…. but neither can the toddler.

Toddlers are like freakin’ magicians! One moment, she’s sitting there picking her nose; and the next she comes tumbling down the stairs. Literally. Somehow, one night, Alexis snuck up the stairs and decided it would be cool to fall down them, barrel roll style, and crash into the wall at the bottom. She was uninjured, but clearly shaken. Of course Mom wanted to take her to the ER even though she was fine 30 seconds after.

And the financial strain… ridiculous! In late ’00, shortly after Brookie was born, I had to pick up a second job (for five years) so we could afford the $15,000 a year that it cost to have two children in daycare.

This became the first strains on our marriage. I would get home from my first job, make dinner for everyone, then head off to my second job to work ’til midnight. This put the extra workload of two young children squarely on Dina’s back. But it also put a huge emotional strain on myself… I essentially missed out on the first five years of Brookie’s life. I’d work weekends while the family went to the zoo. Stuff like that…

We got Brooke into sports just like we did with Alexis. Brookie didn’t take to sports as well as Alexis did. She was good, just like her older sister, she just hated playing. There was a while there when she would complain of stomach aches before T-ball or soccer. Maybe I was the wimp there; I wanted to pull her out because she got so distraught. But her Mom’s perseverance kept her in both sports. T-ball turned into softball and soccer (through the Brunswick rec center) ultimately turned into travel soccer.

Speaking of sports, Brookie is the total opposite of older sister Alexis. Alexis is short, very strong, but quite slow. Brooke is just a tiny little girl. Definitely weaker than Alexis at comparable ages… but man is she fast! Alexis has always been more of a standout, superstar, sort of player; while Brookie is an integral, hard working part of her teams.

As far as school goes, Brooke’s always been a great student and pretty good classmate. She gets straight A’s most of the time and works pretty hard.

BUT MAN SHE’S A LITTLE FIRECRACKER! She’s WAY less reserved than her sisters. She doesn’t hold back and says it like it is. She’s very bullheaded, like myself. Sometimes she even shocks me! But I won’t hold her back! Though we butt heads quite frequently nowadays, I don’t sweat it. I believe women need to be tough like, no doubt, Brooke will continue to be in this world.

Also… Brookie is freakin’ HILARIOUS! It’s tough to snap a pic of her without her making some sort of crazy face. And she’s a habitual practical joker. Out of the two daughters I’ve discussed thus far, Brookie is most like me.

She’s gonna go far in whatever she does…. as will all my girls!

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