Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Growing Up

Four years, one week, and one day. Four Christmases. Four summers playing in the sun. Four birthdays. One presidential election, and a new president. Two Olympic games. One move to Idaho and one move back. Four "homes." One night in the hospital, connected to an IV. One vacation to Alaska and one to Yellowstone. One baby sister. Twelve cousins born. One new aunt. One first step, first word, first tooth, first day of preschool, first day of Primary, first prayer. Countless stories, songs, pushes on the swing, visits to Grandma and Grandpa's, play dates, trips to the zoo or park or library, walks, hugs, kisses, laughs, smiles, tears, runny noses, changes of clothes, messes, memories. Two beautiful bluish-gray eyes, one button nose, one smile that melts my heart, two arms with two hands, two legs with two feet, one perfect, healthy body, one smart little head finally covered in wavy, blonde hair. Four years, one week, and one day ago my life changed forever. I became a mother.

EM was a week late. Her tardy entry into this world was only the beginning - an indication that EM will always do things in her time, when she is GOOD and ready. And to expect anything else will only lead to disappointment and frustration on all sides. She is stubborn, or in the words of her preschool teacher, "she knows what she wants." And does things her way. A Church teacher once told me that when EM starts school she will be the type of student who will listen to the instructions given and then promptly do the assignment the way EM wants to do it. I have grown to love this about my oldest daughter. I have learned to not worry when she doesn't do things I expect her to do. I have forced myself not to force (or at least to try not to force). She will make friends when she's ready, she will get over her fear of being in front of people when she's ready, she will let me put "pretties" in her hair when she's ready, she will wear something other than her favorite pair of jeans when she's ready, she will become a mamma's girl when she's ready. And she will start kindergarten before I'm ready, she will become more and more independent before I'm ready, she will continue to grow and become a big girl before I'm ready to let go of my baby girl.

As I look at this girl, I wish I could slow down time. How can she possibly be four already?! Another four years and she'll be baptized. An accountable child, capable of knowing right from wrong. Hopefully making GOOD choices. She wants to be big, and I want her to stay little. Four years, one week, and one day my life has been filled with love for a child. My child.
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