Tuesday, May 31, 2011

To Adelaide on her 4th birthday

Dear Adelaide,

Happy fourth birthday beautiful girl. For weeks now you've been correcting your Dad and I when we tell people who ask that you are four. "I'm 3!" you say with determination. Finally, now you can say you are four and so can we.

Being your mom is a most humbling experience because you amaze me on a daily basis. When I look at you I am constantly reminded that you are my daughter and bits and parts of me are also in you, but as a whole you are a more spectacular human being than I ever could be. There are so many things about you that make me smile and make my heart melt. In what seems like four short years you have transformed from my newborn baby into a stunning little girl.

You are curious and innocent. I love your questions and your logic during arguments. You don't take answers on face value. You always ask additional deeper questions to understand just what I mean. I love that if a situation makes you nervous and I open the conversation by allowing you to ask me any question you like about what is in store for you; you fire away and I can instantaneously sense your anxiety fade away. I love that you don't let me just say "because I said so" or "just because". You require more information than that and I love to give you honest, age appropriate, real answers to your questions. You keep me on my toes and constantly thinking through my own actions to make sure they will be acceptable to you and in line with the type of person your father and I hope you will be. You force me to be my best self in your presence.

You're not typically a risk taker. You took weeks to finally go under the water in the pool this summer even then it was a careful measured decision to do so. You hate the movie theaters because it's going to be a new unknown movie you see there. It takes you a long time to become comfortable in new situations and really come out of your shell. That's why I'm so proud of how you opened yourself up to your preschool classmates and teachers this year. You formed true friendships, grew socially and tried new things. I love seeing you reach for a special handshake from one of the boys or exchange little gifts and hand written notes with your girl friends. I love the confident strong voice that you use now and seeing you joke and laugh and jump into a game. Now you shout out your farewells to your friends just as they shout to you. At the first of the year you wouldn't say a word!
The other day we were at your Father's boss' home for a dinner party and by the end of the night you were chumming it up in the game room with the older boys who were all playing video games and joking around. Seeing you confidently join them and participate in the fun made my heart sing. You're growing and changing and slowly reaching our of your comfort zone that is me, Dad, and Bella. I am so proud of you. Sometimes I look at you and have to remind myself that you are only four. Sometimes I see glimpses of you as a teenager and I have remember that you still need my help opening your water bottle or putting on your socks without toe wrinkles. Thank God I still have all this time to do these things for you and with you.

I love seeing your face after I've insisted that you keep trying to do it on your own. I'll show you the way to do it, then give you a chance to try again. The spark that ignites when you accomplish something new is electric. It's like you are starting to believe the idea that you really can do anything you want if you try hard enough.

You are an amazing big sister. I adore hearing you call your sister "little Bella bean" when you are playing or she has fallen and you are making sure she's alright. You show your sister tenderness and love that tells me the two of you will be good friends as you grow together. You can be a tad bossy when you start a game and she has decided not to fall in line (Bella never falls in line). Quickly, you adjust things so she can still be involved in her own way. As the oldest and the first child you will have more responsibilities and will always have to be a good model for your younger siblings. I have no doubt you will take on this role like a champ.

At school this year a good deal of time was spent learning about people who work and have roles within a community. A good deal of time was also spent on discovering yourself and your likes and dislikes. You were asked what you wanted to be when you grow up and your answer was always, without fail "a mommy"! At home I encouraged you to choose a profession along with becoming a mommy because that's an option you most likely will adopt when you grow up. You shot that idea down over and over even when the combinations were things like; ballerina and mommy or chef and mommy, even fashion designer and mommy or veterinarian and mommy. "No" you'd insist, "Only a mommy!" was your response. And you know, I understand the feeling darling girl. I'm a mommy and just a mommy and that is what you see me doing. You are going to be a fantastic mommy because the authenticity of your interactions with babies and your dolls is the sweetest thing I've seen. You hold and bounce your baby doll with the comfort of a seasoned mother. Right now at the age of four you have stated your motherhood claim and I love it.

Every year Adelaide, you grow more and more amazing. You're silly and funny and sweet. Every year you grow more so. We are navigating the parent child relationship together since you are our first daughter and so far I think it's going well. I only hope that as every year passes we can just grow closer and more in touch with one another. I can't imagine a day when I don't know what you've eaten for lunch or when you've fallen asleep for the night. I know that day will come when you are older and I'm so grateful that you still need me for all those things a child needs. I'm not ready for you to be exponentially bigger and more grown up. Day by day growing bigger is all this Mommy can take.

I love you precious girl. You are one of the lights that I hold in my heart and one of the reasons I think being a Mom is the best thing I will ever do in my life. Happy Fourth birthday! We have many more to celebrate together.



Daniela Swider said...

Awwww, so moving - I am crying over here... Happy Birthday, Addy!

meredith said...

What a sweet letter - we are such lucky moms to have such wonderful girls - but Addy is definitely lucky to have you!!! Can you believe they are 4 this year????