Letter to Grace on her 9th
My sweet, what a year. The year of electronics. The year we said good bye to toys and hello to iPods, DS’s and Wii’s. The year we finally let go and let you go on sleep-overs. The year we let you walk to your friends’ house all on your own. The year you stopped complaining and even started enjoying meals created for the family, and didn’t require a separate menu at dinner time. The year you became content to read to yourself at bedtime, proving yourself to be a voracious reader. The year I’m pretty sure I saw a boy flirting with you, not just playing with you – there was something more there, and your shy smile back at him makes me think you realize this as well. The year you didn’t necessarily want me volunteering every Friday at lunch time - the thrill of Mom popping in for a midday visit obviously disappearing.
With your impending move towards independence I have to make an effort to stay in the loop. Having a nine year old is easier in many ways – you are happy to go to the basement and play Mario Cart – but I have to get my butt down there more often and giggle with you and play Just Dance with you so you can see that I can have fun too. The other night you shyly asked me to read to you – I was taken aback but so happy you still wanted me. You are also slowly culling all of my skull accessories – my hats, socks, t-shirts – I love that you like this little part of me. You make me proud of the company you keep – so far oblivious to Girl Drama that can occur at this age.
I can’t help but compare myself to you at the this age – you are so much stronger than I was – unafraid to question things, more confident and more persevering. I could use negative words here – to question things could be misread as disrespectful; your confidence could be misconstrued as cocky and your perseverance mistaken as stubborn. It can be challenging at times to deal with these traits, but I honestly believe, for a girl, these are valuable traits that will get you far and I never want to discourage your voice from being heard.
I love you Gracie, happy birthday.