Monday, 16 April 2012

Meet: Nieve

This is my niece Nieve. She's three but it's her birthday next month and she'll be 'two'. She's the daughter of my older sister and is absolutely brilliant - definitely one of my favourite people! We met on a Friday in May 2008, just a couple of days after United beat Chelski in the Champions League Final and so during pub or pool hall conversations, one of my close friends still refers to her as Edwin. 

Nieve is such a brilliant child – I can't stress that enough. Obviously I'm biased and would love her whatever but she has such a great spirit and individuality I just can't help but respect. She's not a little sheep - she never follows a crowd. When her dance teacher asked her class what they all wanted to be when they grow up, the first little girl stood up and said 'a princess'. One by one half a dozen little girls followed the first little girls lead by saying that they also wanted to be a princess. Until it was Nieve's turn. Ignoring the pattern Nieve stands up and says “when I'm older I want to be a doctor”. Now, nobody knows where it came from - I'm not sure she's mentioned it again since - but you have to admire her ambition.

As well as being a complete original, Nieve can also be a real handful. Us Hett's don't like being told what to do and she certainly follows in the footsteps of our side of the family in that respect. The best example of this was when she was 2yrs old and potty training. 

Potty Training

I've not been around a lot of children who are in the midst of potty training and so I don't know if this is common or whether it is just Nieve being Nieve, but either way it is brilliant. Every time she produced a 'specimen' in her potty, Nieve would stand up and take a bow. My parents would of course - as loving grandparents – utterly indulge her by clapping her efforts wildly.

Ok, so back to the not wanting to be told what to do. There was this one particular time that Nieve used the potty, bowing and clapping over she picked up the potty and galloped off in the direction of the downstairs toilet, to flush it away. I wasn't there but I closing my eyes I can imagine my Mum looking on in horror as Nieve insists that she will do it. She has to do everything and more often than not as – non parenting – family we let her. So Nieve gets her own way and makes her way to the downstairs loo. But she's two, so she's wobbling all over the place and in danger of spilling the potty's smelly contents all over my parents living room carpet. So at this point my Dad gently suggests that maybe Nieve should be very careful not to spill her potty.
Woops worse thing you could do Gagor. And so as my parents look on in horror, my perfect little niece quite deliberately throws the pink plastic potty up into the air, showering my parents expensive cream carpet with bright yellow wee wee.

It seems that they call it the terrible twos for a reason!

(Re-told by Anthony Hett)

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