I started a tradition of writing a letter to each of the kids on their birthday, starting with their first. And then life happened and I got off track. This is the first I’ve put on the blog. She’ll either love it or it’ll give her something to talk about in therapy.
I knew it was coming; it was just a matter of when.
Years of planning those friggin’ themed birthday parties. Gag. Little hats, matchy-matchy napkins and plates, glitter, pink, princesses and one year, that damn purple dinosaur. How I loathed Barney. And don’t even talk to me about Dora and her annoying backpack. Trust me, if all life’s answers could be found in a backpack, I’d be toting one of those puppies.
And now those days are past me because ‘parties are for babies’. I’m torn between a fist pump accompanied by an unladylike whoop and a bit of misty eyed nostalgia. *sniff*
She’s been working on the whole tween thing, perfecting the eyeball roll, the derisive sneer for anything harboring a whiff of uncool and ‘Mom’ delivered in that tone that all girls eventually master that effectively conveys all your idiocy and unhipness in a flowing rhythm of syllables. How the hell do they do that? It’s a gift I suppose.
She decided on a birthday meal at a local burger joint that’s been around since 1948. For this child, anything from the 80s is retro. I, a product of 1974, thankyouverymuch, am practically an antique to her. She once asked me when we got color television. The snark is strong with this one.
But as I sat across the table from her and watched her take that first bite of a Health Camp shake, it occurred to me I haven’t said goodbye to my baby, I’m just saying hello to the awesome young woman she’s becoming.
And so I sit here in the middle of Barnes and Noble, tears streaming down my face as I write this post. For the longest I’ve viewed motherhood as a series of goodbyes. What an idiot.
There are so many more hellos to be had. You’ll rock some of them. Some of them will rock you. But I watch you and I see you. All you are, all you’ll be.
I love you, P.