It’s my daughter’s TWELFTH birthday today. And in a way, it’s my birthday too. Not that it’s about ME, of course. But twelve years ago today, I became a mother. Whose heart began living outside her body.
While I recall that wacky breathing stuff from Lamaze class – hee, hee, hoo, hoo – I’m pretty sure they NEVER covered the ins-and-outs of the heart-now-outside-your-body business. And yes, yes, I gave birth to a HEART! I’m in the Guinness Book of World Records. Look me up. And if you did look me up, then you’ll realize that I was being figurative about the heart, Stupey Cupid.
July 23, 2002 was ALSO the birth of my cosmic do-over. This time around, I still have the freckles and brown hair, but I’m much more sporty and good at math! [She said in a funny and not-at-all-creepy-nor-obsessively-focused-on-perfection sort of way.]
And for our matching mother-and-daughter birthdays, as a special treat, Sissy and I went to get our nails done together this morning.
When we walked in to the salon, I explained to the nailtichian about the birthday thing. (My daughter’s birthday, not mine; I’m not THAT much of a wackadoodle. Jeez o’Pete! Give me some credit. And for the purposes of this blog, my daughter’s codename is Sissy.) And the nailtichian immediately went into raptures. “Oh, Baby! Baby birthday!! Baby, you want pretty flowers on toes, on fingers for birthday?”
Slowly nodding her head, Sissy gave her a look that said, “If by ‘Baby’ you mean me, the newly minted twelve-year-old, then yes, bring on the flowers!”
So she went her way to get flowers and be called ‘Baby’ for the next hour, and I went my way to get pale pink shellac on my fingernails. All the while, the male nail dude who drew my lot chatted to me about HIS kids. His oldest is 24 and has his own life, but nail dad misses him so much. His 22-year-old just graduated from college. And the younger two are in school in Tan Asia and even though they’re a lot of work, he is enjoying it because they grow up so quickly.
Hmmm…I barely know where Wyoming is. I’m pretty sure I’ve got NO idea where Tan Asia is! And I gotta get me a job as a nail technician because apparently you can put 4 kids through school on that salary! AND you become a philosopher. And if you listen long enough to the philosopher’s “getting a driver’s license” stories, you eventually clue in to the fact that the younger two are in school AND teenagers. Oy. Tan Asia? God bless.
But I got his point loud-and-clear. What seems like a twelve-year-old now, will quickly go to Tan Asia, then graduate from college and eventually move out on their own. And you will miss them so, so much. So enjoy it now. For all it’s worth. And don’t sweat the small stuff. Except for the math. We’re really gonna NAIL that this time around.
So – with that in mind, I wanted to thank you, My Darling Little Girl, for these past twelve years. They’ve been the BEST! You are the BEST. Happy Birthday…Baby!