Dear Sweet Baby Girl,
Okay, so maybe you aren’t quite a baby any more. Every time I blink – you get bigger. And every time I pause for a moment, you are using bigger words (like loquacious… what?!) and learning empathy and doing math and solving problems. So, while I know you aren’t technically a baby any more… I’m taking a moment to reflect on what the past 6 years have meant to me.
How we got here so fast is a mystery to me – but I do know that we managed to pack a million precious memories into the past 6 years and that alone brings me comfort.
Kindergarten marks the beginning of brand new friendships, creating new memories outside of your family, the concept of homework (which I have a strange feeling you will actually enjoy…), eating lunch at school, riding a school bus and the start of a new and exciting chapter of your life. A wonderful world awaits you my sweet girl, but that new beginning also closes a chapter of the baby years. And just typing those words is enough to make me curl up in a ball and cry…
You have brought so much meaning and joy to my life and while I tell you that every day, I don’t know that you can fully grasp the concept just yet about just how much I love you.
When you were just a newborn baby, we moved to a new city. You helped me adjust to the newness of a place where you (and your dad) were literally all I knew. We went on a lot of adventures, just the two of us – you were my little (and only) sidekick. You gave my life purpose and your smile and laugh made me feel like everything was going to be okay. And so it was.
When you were just 14 months old, we found out that you would become a big sister (times 2!!!!) and you were there. You were with your dad and me in the ultrasound room when the doctor said the words “so there are two (babies)…” – you were blissfully and joyfully unaware while tearing apart the room during the moment when I first heard those words. You were there when we excitedly learned that ‘Baby A’ was a girl and ‘Baby B’ was a boy. And you were there when your dad and I sped off to the hospital in the middle of the night to give birth to your brother and sister 10 weeks early.
You were there to visit your brother and sister in the NICU and you would sit and pretend to nurse your baby doll while I tried to figure out life as a mom to three. You didn’t miss a beat – you took your role as doting big sis seriously and I found comfort in knowing that you loved the new title. You were there when the twins came home from the hospital and you were there through all the late nights, the early mornings, the moments when I thought I wouldn’t survive and the moments when I celebrated even the smallest milestones. You were there as the twins grew from babies to toddlers to preschoolers and you added ‘best friend’ to your big sis title along the way.
We discovered the world anew, together. You helped me settle into my role as ‘mom’ and you always made sure I felt loved. We went for bike rides and walks and played Snow Monster at the park; we had dance parties and baked cookies and read book after book and colored picture after picture and have laughed until we’ve cried.
We reveled in these long stretches of childhood bliss. I’ve lived vicariously through your accomplishments. I watched as you ran your heart out in a road race & when you learned how to add and subtract. I watched you tackle your fears by dancing on stage at your ballet recital despite the nervous tears. You’ve given me the chance to relinquish some of my own childhood memories by watching yours.
You’re silly, shy, loyal, driven and as sweet as they come. You get nervous when the attention is on you (I can relate to that…), you ask me a million questions every single day and if there ever was a pause button – I would press it right now and never let go.
These six years have been filled with the highest highs—and some challenging lows. And now, kindergarten is here—all too soon.
Kindergarten is the start of a brand new chapter of your life, one that extends beyond your family. But I hope that home will always be your safe place—and will do everything I can to keep it that way. And for now I want you to go with these life lessons (and don’t worry sweet girl… I will do my best to hold back my tears until I get to the car on the first day of school).
My wish for you as you embark on your new journey:
BE YOURSELF: If someone doesn’t like you for YOU, that is their loss. I hope that you unlock the creativity inside of you, and express your personality in an artistic expression that speaks truth for you.
DON’T SAY YOU’RE SORRY: Only say you’re sorry when you have done something that merits an apology. And when you have done wrong, you can apologize and people will believe that you genuinely mean it.
SAY NO: Say no when someone wants you to do something that goes against what you know to be right. When you are asked to commit your time to something that you really don’t want to do… just say NO. Time is our most valuable asset – choose to spend it wisely.
BE A GOOD FRIEND: I hope you find friends who laugh at your silly jokes, who let you into their secret clubs and who you can be yourself with.
SMILE, LAUGH, DON’T STOP VIEWING THE WORLD WITH AWE: This world is so beautiful – smile every day, laugh every day, live every day. Don’t be afraid to try new things and to stretch yourself to your limit.
ALWAYS TELL THE TRUTH: Even when it would be easier to lie. The truth will set you free. The truth is also much easier to remember.
DON’T BE AFRAID TO FAIL: It’s okay to make mistakes, only then will you learn. Only then will you discover new insights about yourself.
STAND UP FOR WHAT’S RIGHT: When you see someone being treated unfairly, don’t be afraid to speak up. I hope that your heart is moved with empathy and stirred to action.
And above all else… LOVE WITH ALL YOUR HEART.
You’re going to do amazing things. I am already SO incredibly proud of you.
I love you forever Sweet Girl.