You are 5 and almost a half. Six this year, your tiny body only starting to form in my belly oh those many years ago.
I look at you now and see a woman. A girl, becoming. The lengthening of your body, the clay of your face, becoming, dancing around those perfect river mud brown eyes of yours, shaped carefully like mine.
Oh darling, you are so very lovely.
You and I went for groceries today, as we did all summer. After nearly two weeks of winter vacation, your sister has been ready to kill, so it was best to take you with me. One more blood curdling scream and I will burn every single toy in this house. Pinkie swear.
You’re joy personified with me, in the buggy, beside me, nattering on and on, charming the deli lady out of some roast beef, having a giggle with some random passerby, chatting with other kids. You’re helpful, and (mostly) well mannered, and I only have to use “The Voice” once. You’re a whirling dervish, and I love you.
But more, I love this NOW. I love watching your eyes light up when your teacher taps you on the shoulder and says hello. I love watching your adoration for another woman slither through your body like sand. I love knowing you spend your days happy without me.
We joke in the store. We juggle apples, buying one of each, Honeycrisp, Golden Delicious, Pink Lady, Russet, as I extol the virtues of each, demonstrating “springy” with my hands and feet, delaying artichokes till next week. We speak in tongues you and I, and I have more fun than I’ve had in weeks, watching you light up as I trust you, alone in the toys for a few minutes.
Rope darling. Sometimes you need enough to hang yourself with. I’ll never be so far away I can’t catch you, although I might let you fall every so often.
You ask for fuzzy socks as a treat. Socks! How awesome are you? You whine less than the old man behind us when it takes forFRICKENever to get through the cash.
You beg incessantly for friend chicken the entire time. (ok, that part I could have done without)
Sweets, it’s been busy lately. We’ve had company, we’ve had days off, we’ve had holidays-we’re off our game. Or I am at least, so I’ve been yelly and cranky and just kinda sorta not much fun most days.
Today was nice. Today reminded me of you, the growing up girl, the lady I’ll love to talk to, the girl I already love to talk to, who I have fun with. Ros and I-we understand a mutual need for silence. But you? You’re my giddy girl, the one who lights the path in the darkness.
You’re my reward, and on days like today, I could float endlessly in it.