I can only tell how fast time goes by through the milestones of my children. One after another they are embarking on new stages of life and growth. I feel somewhat detached from all of this as I watch them become independent, and yet, I am anything but.
The moment I laid eyes on my baby girl, my second born, my bundle of unstoppable energy, I said, “What a sweetheart!” I just had a feeling. A strange but real feeling that “sweetness” and she were synonymous. This child allowed me the joy of being fully present the moment she was born by making really quick work of it. With a delivery of 9 minutes, who would complain? That is who she is. She tries to make the world easier for everyone. She tries to capture beauty. She creates and creates and creates and creates.
A lover of clothes, make-up, and pop culture, she is capable of anything. She cooks, she bakes, and she chops wood. She is an excellent student and child care provider as well as a hard worker. She is the middle child from heaven. Oh sure, there were/are moments that we question/ed that. Like when she and her father had their battle for power when she was two years old as she repeatedly got out of her bed and he repeatedly returned her to it spending hours outside her door determined to break the habit. Guess who won. She had to learn that he would always win if it was for her own benefit. Or when she would circumvent the fence system to get a ball when her older sister wouldn’t because she wasn’t allowed even though “it’s right there!” (but as a three-year old crossing through the fence meant following a ball into the street so, of course, in she was swooped as her consequence.) Or when she offered to show her preschool class my yellow tooth, (a souvenir from my youth when I fell out of a moving vehicle) for a small fee. Yes, there are those times. I fully expect more of them and for many to be not so funny.
But she brings her cell phone into my room every night without argument because this is the rule. She makes a point of kissing me and ending my day with “Goodnight Mama, I love you”. She buys peppermint patties because they are MY favorite. My little sweet love, whose first smile was for her big sister, whose first word was Mom but turned into MOM MOM, (because once isn’t enough!) who was not happy until she was old enough to get into a walker and move around on her own, who fights me on so many things, who goes for the juggler in wrestling matches with Dad, is truly the sweetest person I know. She will go far because she wants to go far. My prayer and my hope is that she will share her joy, her gifts and her goodness as freely at the age of 60 as she does at 16. That she will care as much about her fellow-man then as she does now. That she maintain that strong sense of goodness and kindness and her incredible sense of humor.
Happy 16th Birthday to my Siddy Biddy. There is no one like you.