Reasons why my daughter is awesome:
- She thinks bugs are awesome. She includes others in her appreciation, getting kids and adults (that start off squirming in their seats ewwing at the thought) equally interested in tiny aspects of bugs that make them not just creepy crawly things with lots of legs but amazing creatures that care for their young, have cute faces and should not just be squashed under foot because you can. It’s a bigger message that she spreads – Beauty, Love, Appreciation – should not be saved just for the obvious but that sometimes you have to lift rocks and get dirt under your fingernails to find the best parts of life.
- She gives a really good stink eye. – this is one of those love hate things and I imagine she picked it up from me. But when the tooth fairy forgot to come last night for her little brother she was letting me know in the most silent way possible, burning a hole into my soul with demons shooting at me.
- She is a collector. (Also something that comes from me, but again, extreme) Not only does she keep tiny scraps of paper, bits of plastic, broken jewelry, garbage….but she makes art out of it. Sometimes it sits, collects, spills over and I go in and throw it all away but other times she comes out with something amazing and we all sit in wonder at how she manage to make that.
- She sees the details. ALL the details. One Christmas my mother in law was staying with us and my daughter and I went out. When walked through the door, shaking off the MONW bitter cold she stopped as if frozen. The Christmas tree was fully decorated when we left, but something was new – a new ornament and she recognized the change before her coat was even off.
- She’s clumsy. Now this might be one of those not so great things as there is a running joke of how many times she’s been to urgent care or the ER, but what is the reason for the clumsiness? Why did she crash her bike so brutally on the wooded trail on Sunday? Because of all the wildflowers growing like a carpet, because of the baby bird that had long since fallen out of its nest and my son and I just ran it over as if it were part of the earth already. She sees it all – except, maybe for what’s directly in front.
- She is a miracle. No, I mean really. Here’s a story you think you’ve heard about a mother saying their child is a miracle but you haven’t. When I was pregnant with her I knew something wasn’t right. I ate everything I should touched absolutely nothing I should not, learned to birth naturally, and yet I knew, something was wrong. I even went to the hospital about it. I’m sure they put a special stamp on my file that night that said “P.F.T.M.” for Paranoid First Time Mom or something like that. She was birthed naturally and cried like she should-though a little delayed, a little blue, a bit jaundice….but they said she’s fine. And sent me home. On day 5 I said NO. Friday night, at 4:30 I called her doctor, who was 30 minutes away and I said we are coming because something is wrong and you better be there. Long…..long……story short, she had a major heart defect. Transposition of the Great Arteries or “Blue Baby Syndrome”. She was taken via ambulance to the ER and then later taken to a hospital in Manhattan, NY for surgery. Some day I will write up this full story as there are many more details, and this is a list.
- She still wants to be my baby. She misses curling up in my lap so we still do that. I would gladly hold her in my lap when she’s full grown and rock her.
- She friends the outcasts. The kid who talks funny, who has seizures; the girl with Down Syndrome; the quiet kid who doesn’t talk. She takes them by the hand and brings them into a shared world where they are equals. This has the unintended affect of putting her in the line of fire for bullies. I don’t know what to say about that.
- She forgives instantly. I worry about this one a little but she has taught everyone in her life by example that when something is done it is done. we move on.
- She is compassionate. One time, before my son was born, she was 3 or so, my husband was on a business trip and I caught a stomach bug. I was puking in the toilet and I felt a small hand rubbing my back, holding my hair from my face and then a cool washcloth being offered to me. It still brings tears to my eyes as it did then. The tears from puking turned to tears of gratitude and amazement. She is an old soul.
It is that – old soul – that gives me confidence that she will make it. There are countless struggles ahead for her in life – even ones I can’t foresee but I know she has the guidance of a thousand souls watching over her and knowledge that comes from a history that I have not taught her.
She is Her, and I’m amazed.