(That number? Means I've been blogging for 7 years. Can that be right? Whoa.)
She is big and she is little. She makes statements that are wise beyond her years and she throws tantrums, complete with stomping feet and irrational demands. She rides rollerblades with abandon and got a real skateboard for her birthday and yet requires a hug and a kiss at the bus stop every morning.
She's been on this earth for 8 years and yet I still falter when I sign my name on cards to her: Mom.
|In some ways, she will always be this little baby in my arms.|
We are entering a frightening new world, one where peers rule, secrets are better hidden, parents are eye-roll inducing annoyances rather than all-knowing favorites.
I used to know everything that ever happened to her. Now I'm left with her skewed and limited reporting as her weekdays are mostly spent away from me. For years she would follow me from room to room, refusing to be "left alone" in any room of our not-very-large house. Now when she gets home, she walks upstairs, goes into her room and shuts the door. She writes in her diary and locks it with a key.
I know where the key is, of course.
How much longer will I know where the key is?
(No, I haven't read it without her permission. She will often bring it to us and have us read it when she's too upset - or embarrassed - to speak her truth.)
She still asks me to tell her made-up bedtime stories about Princess Rose and her brother Thistle who get into misadventures with their dragon buddy Snapdragon. We share this love of stories and reading but she reads so fast these days, I can't pre-screen her books for her any more. I'm always looking for longer and more complex chapter books that are still appropriate for a
"Mom? Why are all these books you're getting for me written so long ago?"
"Because there's great literature from that era!'
|Who taught her to pose like this?! WHO SAID SHE COULD TURN EIGHT? (I blame her peers.)|
Today she tucked her Winnie the Pooh book into her back pack and asked worriedly about the Holocaust and walked to the bus stop with her hand in my mine.
I gave her a hug and a kiss goodbye, never knowing when it will be the last one she wants, the last one she'll allow.
"I LOVE YOU MOM," she yelled as she got onto the bus, not looking back, never looking back.