There are many things that Kina gets so excited about that she will literally kick me. Sometimes it is the promise that I will dress her up “like a popsicle” when she’s getting ready for bed. Occasionally it will be that she’s so thrilled to give me a checkup. Once, it was just the idea that she needed to get out of the tub. She’s got lots of excitement, this one, but very spotty unconscious control of her limbs, and so I often get injured in the delivery. I’ve been kicked in the shins, taken multiple skulls to the front teeth, and splashed with a bucket full of water (which, while not an injury, is significantly inconvenient)—all in the name of excitement.
At least now she apologizes for it, though she’s always still visibly thrilled when she makes her apology, which leads to the vaguest of feelings that she is not actually sorry. Typically I have words when somebody lies to my face about being sorry, but it’s hard to muster up the philosophical argument with a boisterous kid, and watching her smile does bring out the endorphins, so I grin, and I bear it. I have gotten used to all of this—both the injury and the insult—but it does eventually grow painful and exhausting, and I wonder when she’ll stop throwing her bones around involuntarily when she’s happy. When it happens, my body will heal, and I will surely appreciate my newly-subtle excited kid, but I will definitely miss it.
I will miss being kicked in the shins. Wild.