Eight

My apologies for skipping out on my Fifty Shades post yesterday.  It was a busy day, and I didn’t have the chance to do much other than hold things together.  I’ll do my best to have one for next week.

Meanwhile, today my amazing daughter celebrates her eighth birthday.  As I type this, she’s enjoying a gift from her aunts–a large box that once held a portable air conditioner.  Honestly, I sometimes think I shouldn’t bother buying my kids anything.  I could just call around to stores and ask if they have any boxes they’re throwing away.  I assumed kids outgrew the stage where the packaging was more interesting than the toy; apparently not.  Today alone the box has been a monster storage unit, a rocket, a car, a tunnel, and (folded flat) a bridge.  Her brother and cousin have taken off to play something else; she’s bringing her little plastic animals inside the box and setting up a complex world.

Eight is an interesting age.  She’s still young enough to enjoy her toys, but sometimes, she seems surprisingly grown up.  She has an impressive vocabulary for a girl her age.  Yesterday, I was reading to the kids.  We came across the word “propitious”–definitely not a word one finds in most stories for third graders.  She asked what it meant then said, “Wait.  I think I know.  I’ll bet it means ‘right.'”  She’s pretty close, actually, and that is more or less how the word was used in the context of the story.  The best part is that she’ll probably start looking for ways to use the word.

She’s always been that way.  She talked early and often.  I have to admit, I was happy her first word was “mama.”  Her big brother had at least five words before he said it!  After that, it was obvious she was going to be just like me–a talker.  She has something to say about everything.  She also has a pretty good grasp on sarcasm.  I don’t know whether to be pleased or not that she has my sensibilities (okay, I am pleased).  I think the way she speaks is one of my favorite things about her; she and I can sit down and talk in a way I really can’t with her brother, even though he’s older.  That’s not to say he and I don’t talk–it’s just very different.

It’s been a long road parenting kids with such intense personalities.  I used to watch friends who had these quiet, gentle kids or easygoing kids or mostly obedient kids and think maybe I’d done something wrong.  How come mine didn’t act like that?  Was it some mistake of mothering I’d made early on?  It’s not, though.  These are the people they were meant to be.  That just happens to be a little noisier, a little more stubborn, and a little more passionate.  I wouldn’t trade it for anything.

Happy birthday to my wonderful girl–the world is wide open to you, sweetie.

Fly to who you are
Climb upon your star
You believe you’ll find your wings
Fly to Your Heart*

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

*”Fly to Your Heart,” Selena Gomez.  And I’m not ashamed to admit I love that song.

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