I have had Bronchitis for a couple of weeks and am also getting over some kind of Flu bug (‘Tis the season!) but thankfully I am finding bits and pieces of energy here and there and I’m still able to take the girls to dance lessons (barely) and make meals – aka: ordering a pizza. 😉 Yesterday I needed to think through some things and when I need to think, I clean. I organize everything. It is a wonderful form of therapy or maybe I’m just crazy. But I was stopped in my frantic cleaning frenzy tracks when I found a letter I hadn’t seen before that was stuffed with a million other school papers in the craft bin. This is it, word for word – including all the sweet misspelled words:
I love you. Do you like pink? I can’t wait to have desert. What is it gonna be? What about cake like red velvet? Or vinilla. or Strawberry. You make my life easier. Do you like Ombama? I think you are beautiful! do you where lipstick? Cause you look good without it.
I laughed at how much my girls think about sweets and then immediately got tears in my eyes. Okay, I bawled. You see, my oldest baby girl and I have been going through quite a struggle lately. She is 8 going on 16 and I am at a loss for how to parent her behavior and bold independence that tends to show itself in hurtful ways towards me. We butt heads often and sometimes it truly feels like we are miles apart from each other. We have arguments weekly about her clothes, how much she hates math and isn’t doing homework ever again, friend drama and her hair. Don’t get me started on the hair dilemma. One week bows are “babyish” and she won’t let me do her hair and the next week, she’s mad at me because I don’t put bows in her hair! WHAT?!! But I found this letter that was written for me and the words, “You make my life easier” and I saw her, again. She is still a little girl who needs a mommy, a mommy who understands and is there for her – even on the days that make us both crazy. I am learning to have more patience and this letter helped me put things in perspective. I hope I never forget how powerful words can be.
Last week Chloe came home from school and asked if she could use one of my typewriters because she had an idea for a children’s book and wanted it to be typed out. Growing up with me for a mother has definitely rubbed off on her! A child in 2012 asking for a typewriter… seriously! So, of course I got out the girls computer yesterday that hadn’t been set up since we moved and typed a little note to her on the blank screen. I told her I loved her and couldn’t wait to read what she writes. When she got home I showed her the “surprise” and you would have thought I had given her a pony. At bedtime, I couldn’t pry her away from typing out her book. I think I have a little writer on my hands. I hope this common love we share of books and writing will keep us connected even through the growing pains that we are enduring right now and the many more that are sure to come.
“I would have given anything to keep her little. They outgrow us so much faster than we outgrow them.” Jodi Piccoult