Tuesday, November 1, 2011
My dear Miss E. You're 7. I cannot believe that 7 years have gone by since the day you were born. When you were in my tummy, your kicks were so strong that I commented to your daddy "I think we have a strong one here" and then for your birth. Honey, you went through 3 days of labor with nary a drop in your heart rate. You walked first in our playgroup, you put on your clothes at an impossibly young age. You were the first kid doing and undoing your own car seat straps. I feel like your whole blessed life I have been trying to keep up with you and the way things are going I don't think that's going to slow down anytime soon.
This year has been a big one for you. You're lost 5 teeth including your two top front ones which is adorable. You started first grade but you are past all the first grade (and most of the second grade) curriculum so we are trying to figure out what the heck to do about that. You read, you do math, you make these incredible books and drawings, it's all just amazing to watch. You started riding a bike with gears You do not like to be told what to do. You started sleeping in! This doesn't seem like a big thing but when you have kids you'll understand. Here's what you are NOT INTO: princess things, playing dress up, superheros (although you will humor your brother sometimes), pink. Here's what you are into: science, writing, reading, picking out your own clothes (which must be comfortable and somewhat girly), mailing letters, drawing. You are thus far neutral about sports which I can't quite figure out.
Here are some words Daddy and I have described your personality as this year: smart, strong, sweet, powerful, empathetic, fierce, awesome, kind, delightful, fun, exasperating. No other person in this entire world has made me stretch more to be better. To learn, to really think about how I'm parenting, what I'm feeling and what kind of person I am. You make me want to be a better person. I mean, all parents want to be better people for their kids but something about your toughness combined with your tenderness makes me want to just be perfect for you. And while I never will be perfect, I do try and be my best. Although often I'm not and neither are you and we are learning how to work through those times together. We are both learning how to manage our emotions, to be kind in the face of anger and to think about what's best for the family.
The other night, on Halloween, Mr. T had a melt down while trick or treating. He had devised a system where you would each take turns getting to the door first but he was slower than you and you knew that it doesn't matter who gets there first that you both get candy and he just lost it. You stood there for a minute looking at him and then we urged you to just go ahead, trick or treat on your own while he calmed down. You went up to that house, said trick or treat and then asked if you could have a candy for your brother as well. Then you came down and gave it to him. You did that as the next few houses too, until he recovered and then for the rest of the night you went together, with you gently encouraging him to go to the houses he was scared of. It's things like that, that just define your personality for me. For all your toughness on the outside (which will serve you well in life) , you are very tender on the inside (which will also serve you well). A few years ago, Nana told me that it would only be a lucky few friends that would be let in to KNOW you as you truly are. And she's right. The people in your life that you let see that tender side will be lucky. Every once in awhile Daddy and I joke that on your wedding day (should you choose to get married) we are going to give your husband (should you choose a husband) a card that just says "good luck". It's partially facetious and partially true but the real truth is that whomever you let love you in your life will be a fortunate person indeed.
I hope that down the line, when you are grown, we have the sort of friend-relationship that I have with Nana because, lady, I just really like you. You are smart and fierce and funny and sweet and observant and full of a sense of yourself that most grown ups don't have yet. Happy happy birthday my dear. I can't wait to see what the next year will bring.