Since the day you were born I have tracked your each and every move. Your big milestones like rolling over, saying your first word, your first step and your first food. It’s all charted out on a cute little chalk board that I propped you up next to so I could snap that photo. I sometimes look back at them after you go to sleep each night and try to remember you being so little. In some ways it seems like just yesterday and in other ways it seems like so long ago. So much has happened in those four years. Sorry, four and a half years. Because I know you would correct me.
I look at you every single day and am so incredibly proud of the girl you are. You’re sweet and kind which is so important to be in this life. Kindness matters, don’t you ever forget that. But at the same time you’re strong-willed and always ready to stand your ground. Never back down for something you feel strongly about. Your perseverance and persistence will get you far in life. I promise.
You have a quality about you that many people don’t have – you’re funny. Like really, really funny. To the point that you get away with probably more than you should because I can’t help but laugh at you. The way that you scrunch your little nose when you laugh only makes me laugh harder. It’s contagious. Another great quality to have little one! Because being able to make other people laugh isn’t always easy – but for you it is.
You’re cautious, but fearless. Except with bugs. You don’t let your fear keep you from doing things – you let it excite you. When we present you with new challenges, you consider them for a bit and then jump in. Occasionally you take a little more coaxing, but in the end you push forward. You jump into the foam pit. Take a bite of the weird green stuff. Run that road race. You don’t let fear hold you back.
Being a working mom, I have been so lucky to be able to spend so much time with you in your first four (and a half) years. I know how important that is and I cherish each moment we have together – even when you’re throwing a fit on the floor at Target because you NEED that doll. Ok, that’s not 100% true – I’d be ok with a few less meltdowns. But I understand that your little voice doesn’t always know how to express your feelings and I accept that.
This year is a big year for us. For you and for me. You’re going to kindergarten. Ugh. I don’t mean to sound negative because it’s a great thing. You’re ready, I’m just not. Even though you’ve been in school/childcare since you were a baby there’s just something different about this stage. Does this make you a “big kid”? I think it might. But I don’t think I’m ready for you to be a big kid quite yet. You’ll be there for five days a week. Five. Whole. Days. I hope that teacher knows how lucky she is to be part of your life.
But whether you’re 5 and entering Kindergarten or 35 with kids of your own, you will always be my baby. Always.
Dear pre-schooler, I could honestly write so much about you. I’m so incredibly proud to be your mama and cannot wait to see what you do in this world. You will make an impact. You will change the world for the better.
Stay kind. Stay strong. Stay you.