This year, you are turning 10. The big 1-0. You have been obnoxiously excited about hitting those double digits. I have been at a loss.
It's not that I haven't enjoyed these past 10 years. I have. Immensely. It's that I can't believe 10 years have passed already. When you're a kid everyone tells you to slow down, time passes so quickly. And you laugh because it seems like such a joke. Time is slow when you're young and want to get your driver's license, or be old enough to wear make-up and date. And then one day you are old enough to do all those things. Older, in fact. One day you have kids of your own and you realize that those people weren't kidding. It's too fast.
I've been thinking a lot about this birthday letter, wondering what I would say, if I would be able to put into words just what I want you to know. I don't know if it's possible. I've tried but I always seem to forget something and then I have to start all over because it's just not right.
But I think you said it best when, upon seeing the birthday cake I had made for you, you said you loved the way I made the CD and when I told you it was a record you asked me what a record was. Because that's it isn't it? The basics of it anyway. You are in an era where records don't exist and I am from one where they did.
This year has been a difficult one for us. You have been pushing for more independence while I've been trying to keep you from moving too fast. I think we're starting to find a balance that we're both comfortable with except when it comes to make-up. I say there is no way I'm letting you out of the house wearing it and you try to do it anyway.
This is also the year you finally got a little sister. You've spent much of this year dreaming of pink dresses and braiding hair. I can't tell you what it does to my heart to watch you with her, to watch both of your faces when you smile at each other, all the wonder of it, that bond that you have instantly. It's different then what you have with your brother. While I know you love him just as much, there is something in a sisterly bond that is just special.
You are doing much better in school this year than you have in the past and that gives me hope. I've said before and I've meant it that I want your hands to always be full .
We are coming close to a time when you and I will find it nearly impossible to understand each other. We will be speaking a different language, you of 'teenager' and me? I'll be speaking that dreaded 'mom'- speak. But I promise that despite this, I will never let you get lost in my shuffle as my mother did with me. I will never stop loving you. I will try to remember what it's like to be a tween-age girl.
Your dad has promised to remember what it's like to be a boy at your age and as you get older.
I'm afraid you'll never be allowed out of your room but I promise to push saltines under the crack of the door and maybe a hose for water.
I know you think that we are too often unfair because we don't let you on the phone past 7 pm and we don't let you watch r-rated movies but I'm ok with that because it's our job and as much as I hate saying it because it sounds so much like my father's voice coming out of my mouth (and if you ever tell him I said this I will torch your Hannah Montana CD's) but... when you have kids of your own, you'll understand.
After Josie was born, when I was still in the hospital and enjoying my vicodin, you asked me if I thought you'd make a good mom someday. I tried to picture you in that moment, staring at your nine year old daughter, holding your newborn, and I knew that you would.
But please, don't rush it. Time passes oh, so very quickly. And before you know it? Your ten year old will be asking you that same question and rolling her eyes when you get teary.
Happy 10th Birthday Bre......