The pictures are a little fuzzy but I still loved looking at them this morning. I think I could have slept until noon today, but the sun was out early and there’s a promise that it IS going to warm up again. It’s the last 48 hours of the school year so I really just need to slog through it. We’ve filled a few stages lately, sung and acted and played and marched until we were done. We’re down to the cleanouts, the goodbyes, the brown bag lunches, and all the extra cookies and ice cream. May can get so exhausting and so demanding, even when we plan ahead and try to stay ahead of the game. But then we sit for a spell, and watch her fingers move across her strings (correctly! we were watching!) and then she catches our eyes as she bows and smiles, and all is good in the world.
A few weeks ago M and I found a card with a thumbs up sign on it that says “Nailed It” on the front. We bought it for E, and we’ll slip it into her lunchbox tomorrow. The projects are done, the grades are in, her locker is empty, the contents spilled across the coffee table in the living room and onto the floor. It wasn’t always easy, but she did it. She did it well.
We’ve all had to up our game a bit this year. I reread what I wrote at the start of this school year, and it reminded me again of what an enormous transition last year was. The year before was difficult in many different ways, and I’m so grateful now that we were able to reside in places that were small and familiar and supportive and comforting. And then this year came, and we were ready to stretch a little more, and stretch we did.
We had to trust that the oldest one could leave a tiny nest and navigate a larger, more complicated one. She is more capable and lovely than we even deserve.
We had to trust that the little one was ready for school as well – that she could move into a new schedule with new friends and be the youngest again, for awhile. She is more daring and brighter than we even deserve.
We had to trust that we could balance the hectic nature of two jobs and two schools, and still find time to bring our ‘A’ game to as many things as possible while being okay with our ‘B’ game when necessary. This partnership is deeper and stronger and more balanced than we even deserve.
Feeling grateful this morning for the sunshine and the promise of summer and this beautiful team of mine.
I told myself not to get caught up in the details at this stage of the game and I’m totally listening to myself.
Happy Monday. I hope you had a nice weekend. Ours was warm, sunny, and lovely. There was this moment in the early afternoon, just after lunch on Saturday, when the sun was streaming in the back kitchen window and the four of us stood there and gestured and imagined what it’s going to look like when we’re done. It felt just like this very moment, fifteen years ago, when we did the same. Just two of us then, as smart and foolish in our twenties as we are now in our forties. Fifteen years ago this week he asked me to marry him. After we bought this shell of a house. What else could I say? As smart and as foolish as I hope I to always be.
I was sorting through some stacks of paper and I came across the Christmas list that you wrote to Santa. Well – you started to write it, and then apparently grew weary of the task, and dictated the rest to your dad. I’ve decided to keep it, to tuck it into the box of things we deem worth tucking. Away for now, waiting for a moment in some distant future when we’ll find it again and smile. For Christmas you wanted a Pink Pony, a Rainbow Unicorn (that also glowed), and while you were in the act of requesting glowing animals, you threw in a Glowing Turtle as well. Once you moved on from animals that do not exist, you turned to items that you could imagine enjoying on a daily basis – Bells that would peal each morning through the air to bring you gently, joyfully, into the new day. And Magical Windows that open and close when you tell them to. Even after this list was made, you continued to talk about these things as if they could exist. You later modified the windows’ actions to work when you merely thought about them opening and closing.
We were looking for real clues, a little guidance, on what to wrap up for you for Christmas. Your list was no help at all on that front, except that we all read it and realized that glowing animals sounded so cool, and morning bells would be beautiful, and oh, if we could just lie in bed and gaze out at the summer blue sky from your third floor hideaway and just imagine feeling the breeze on our face and the windows would throw themselves open at the mere whisper of our wish!
We didn’t know that we wanted all of those things until you said them.
We didn’t know that we wanted to engage in heated debates over the sequencing of every task, until you were here to spark them. We didn’t know that we wanted to be brought to our knees by your fiery temper or your razor sharp wit, until you were here to launch your words in equal parts vicious and hilarious. We didn’t know that we wanted to read poetry and offer shoulders and listen to the same songs over and over and over again, until you were here to express utter delight in things that we can delight in doing for you.
We didn’t know how very much we wanted to think up someone like you, until you were here and you were more than we could have ever imagined.
Welcome to five and a half. You’ve earned it, my sweet, sweet girl.