Twelve years ago today, you were born and I became a mother.
When you looked like this, I believed that the whole parenting thing would be a piece of cake once I was getting enough sleep. It turned out that while sleep is helpful, it does not give you all the wisdom you need to parent.
Watching you navigate the new world of middle school this year showed me what it really means to be a mom. I need to be there to listen and guide but also to let go. I’ve always loved you but this year, I really came to understand just how much I admire the person you are growing to become.
This year, you were the pure embodiment of a tween. You loved and hated. You were brave and fearful. You were creative and stuck. You took risks and hid. You tried so, so hard and wanted to quit. You experienced all of this with us and on your own. I feel like I watched you grow up right in front of me. You are a different girl than the one I knew at this same time last year.
I find it harder and harder to write these letters each year as you become more and more private. There were times when you didn’t even know I was writing to you in this space. And then there were times when you knew but were happy with anything I said. Now you have become more private as you take just another step to being the amazing grown up I know you will be. So for this space, this is all for now.
Just know how much I love you and how proud I am of the year you just had. Happy Birthday baby girl and here’s to an amazing year to come.