8
Apr

Double-digit girl

Dear double-digit girl, I have been thinking about this day for a long time. Heading into a whole new chapter. One in which friends and time away and circles are of high importance. One in which feelings are getting tougher to navigate. One in which your mom who struggles with change can only see the little we brought home. I remember the day so clearly, the sun shining, being in the car with you. Checking out which little nickname sounded more fitting. I remember what I was wearing, I remember what you were wearing. I remember the car seat feeling so far away. I remember pulling into the driveway with our orange car, taking you into our house turned home and introducing you to Mia. I remember bringing you to your room, taking you out of the seat, placing you on the carpet, and I remember the day I fell madly in love with you.

I remember so much of our ten years together, I remember the wonderful, the scary, the awful, the trials, the horrible, and the boring every day. I remember every fever, most appointments, the things you always try (because you are good at always trying anything), and the hugs along the way. I know that we raised a ten year-old that loves and honors traditions. I know that we raised one that thinks a lot, that observes, that listens, that looks to us. I know that the bookworm lives strong in you and I know that you love music. I see how much family time means to you, and I realize how important your friends are becoming.

Ten. Double-digit girl, I have been thinking about this day for a very long time. On the day you turned five, I was taking your picture and said "look here baby girl" and you said, "mom, I'm not a baby anymore, I'm five now." So what do you think ten means? Gosh, ten means a lot of chatter, all of the feelings, filling me in on so much of your day to day, letting me see what you think is so so funny. Ten means I keep listening, because you love telling me things and I have to keep that going. Ten still means snuggles and whispering, "I love you mom". Ten still means holding hands a lot and kissing noses and telling each other we carry our hearts with us so we're never alone. Ten means you asking me questions about work, and why so many hours and tell me more about how it's going to slow down soon, ten means you ask how our days were and you laugh with your whole body.

Double-digit girl, I have spent the past ten years learning how to mother. You have given me a gift sweet girl. The gift of all of my firsts, because all of your firsts are my firsts. You have handed me this gift of learning and growing with you. And holy hell have I learned. I have learned that losing patience makes you more mad than calm. I have learned that you can scream just as loud as I can so why bother. I have learned that you have moments of anger, frustration and boredom that makes you make poor decisions. But I have also learned that you beam when we are proud. I have learned that kindness goes a long way with you. I have learned that you adore time, time with us, time one-to-one, time. I have learned that you are easy, you bend, you are flexible, you keep going with us. I have learned that you just do, you navigate, you pivot well. I have learned that you try, oh sweet girl do you always always try. No matter what, you give it a try and see how it goes and that makes you fearless and limitless. You do it with such confidence, you are my hero.

Double-digit girl, I have a lot more to learn, you have a lot more to do. I promise to hold on as you take me through this ride and the next ten years will be drastically different than the firs ten. Double-digit girl, I have spent along time thinking about this day.

Happy birthday sweet Anna James.

19
Jan

Five Minute Friday - intentional

Every Friday we unite for five minutes. Only five minutes, that's all we get, that's all we have. And then, right where we are, no edits or second-thoughts, we publish those words. This week, we write on intentional.
Go.

With my thoughts
with my words
with my actions
with my delivery
with my time
with my love.

This is my year of different and that means me being more intentional.

I think what it all boils down to though, is love.
Love of me myself and I.
Love of them, the ones I asked and tried for.
Love of him, the one I chose, the one I am committed to.
Intentional love.

I cannot look back at this time and wish I was more present.
I will not.
I cannot continue to wish time away.
I will not.
I cannot live a hurried life, and allow being busy to replace being a person.
I will not.
We don't get many second chances and I am not going to blow mine.

It is when I am intentionally present that magic and love flourish.
It is then that you feel warm and safe and loved.
It is then that you open up, you let me in, you hold me close.
It is when I am intentional with my love that you are too.
We all are.
If I am loving and gracious and kind, you all meet my energy.

And I do have to work on being intentional, I do have to remind myself that I am slipping back into old ways
old routines
old habits.
Ones that lead to an angry and frustrated mom.
Ones that lead to a troubled and tired soul.
Ones that lead to exhaustion and illness and worry.
Ones that were certainly not intentional.

So, it's ok that I have to work on it, I am a worker, I figure things out and work on them.
That is just fine
that is who I am.
But that doesn't mean I can't use how I operate to build a better life a better me.

In this year of different, I am ready to be intentionally better.

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