The certain proof that I’m a mother is that the last decade has passed in a breath.
It was only a single exhalation ago that I was anxiously anticipating motherhood. Scared, shaky, and uncertain. Gazing into the face of a tiny little being that somehow The Universe saw fit to entrust me with. A little blank slate that I could write on whatever I wanted. A little blank slate that I hoped with all my might that I wouldn’t mess up somehow. A hope that I still carry with me every single day.
And now, here I am. I took a single breath and suddenly I look at this little person and see not the infant that she want just a moment ago, but the budding young woman she is becoming. It is exhilarating and terrifying all in the same moment. She is still small enough to want to snuggle on my lap at the end of a long day, and yet old enough to be pulling out of my arms most days, begging me “not to mother her too much” when we’re with other people.
I know that in another breath she’ll be grown and gone, and I’ll have only stories, photos and memories of my sweet little baby to carry with me. She — my bright, beautiful, sweet, thoughtful and intelligent little girl. My best work in life. My greatest accomplishment. Much as I want to squeeze her tighter and hold on forever, I know that I must continue to loosen my arms just a little bit more. Even if I’m not ready for this, I know that she is.
Happy Birthday, Kiddo.