This week, you are four years old.
You're a good counter, so let's do some counting:
Crazy, isn't it? Counting, I mean.
But back to you, and your four-ness. The past 365 days have been all about figuring out how things work. From 'Momma, why do the clouds move?' to 'Why do we vote?' to 'Why does Aaron's belly button look funny?' (you were not referring to his belly button), you have thrown me each and every day with the daunting task of explaining the world. When I was younger and imagined myself as a mom, my answers to these questions have been both articulate and informative. Now, though, I bumble through a lot of, 'Uh, well... um... it's... complicated, Bubbie.'
And it is, isn't it? Life is so darn complicated, at least it is to this woman in her thirties. But for you, well, I can see how this would not be an acceptable answer.
Buddy is crying? 'Make him feel happy, Momma.'
Daddy is traveling? 'Tell him to come home now, Momma.'
Momma misses her home, momma feels sick, momma is having a hard morning? 'Put on the happy song, Momma. (Eric Hutchinson is your current favorite.) If you sing with us, then you will feel happy.'
I could go on here about your accomplishments. Piano lessons. How each and every teacher you've had has raved about what a joy you are. Your correct pronunciation of the word 'croissant'. But someday, when I'm old and gray and looking back on the highlights of my life, I will think back to this beautiful, smiling face:
And those won't be the details that come to mind. What I'll have with me is the memory that this was the year I saw that your inner beauty far surpassed what you look like on the outside. I won't remember your score on your kindergarten screening test, but I'll remember how many people have described you as a loving and caring friend. How you worried about the lonely boy at the zoo. How you patiently taught your brother to play hide and seek. How, when you saw me shedding a tear a few weeks back, you ran to me and said, 'You're the best momma in the world!"
So happy birthday to my sweet, caring, kind, smart, inquisitive, silly, thoughtful, and yes, beautiful baby girl. Who you are fills me more more joy than I could ever communicate in words. I am so proud to be your mom.