And then she turned five
Through the craziness of this month, I missed my Letters to My Daughter blog circle, but I’ll write you just the same.
My dearest Sofia,
I’m not sure how it happened. I blinked, and you are five. Every day you awe me more with your sparkle. Your fire and independence. I hope I can be all you and your brother deserve, my girl. More and more I think to the things I want you to learn. Things I hope I can teach, though I am still learning everyday in my own heart. Lessons of acceptance and grace. I see you and your brother watching me. Watching your dad. We are modeling these lessons daily. How can I teach you love if I don’t show it to the man who honks his horn behind me, the repair man who is late, the salesperson who sneers? All those who are imperfectly making their way through their own day. You watch. You see far more than I want sometimes, and it’s teaching me to be kinder. Slower. Truer to the soft, sure way I want to walk in the world.
How can I teach you to be grateful for the little things if I pout over that which is beyond us? The things that must wait for later, when money and time are freer. The big house with the big yard. The trips to far away places. The things I will write, the people I will photograph. Does any of it matter when we have a home, imperfect, yet filled with us? When we have this place and space together, the school pick ups, the afternoons at the park. The daily homework and making dinner with a glass of wine in hand and the slow soul of Nina Simone in the background. The quiet loud humming of Little Ponies frolicking with soldier bombs dropping from helicopters on the kitchen counter. The joys of accepting the here, the now. That kind of sacrifice looks like the purest kind of luck to me. But it doesn’t always feel that way, when daily frustrations mount, pressures rise, and I just want to escape, carve out something of me far away, beyond. But perhaps that is the most important lesson of all. To learn the grace of accepting all those imperfections in our heart and mind, and loving ourselves just the same. So much I must teach. So much I must learn. So much love, my girl. We are walking it hand in hand.
Love forever, Mommy