Turning Ten

My beautiful oldest daughter turned ten this weekend. I brought cupcakes to school on Friday, and made her a quiche on Sunday. Last night, Little Sis went to a birthday slumber party, and my 10-year-old and I watched Poltergeist. ("It was a good movie, but it wasn't scary, Mom.")

My 10-year-old.  I'm having trouble wrapping my brain around that fact. Somewhere in my mind, she will always be this:

The chubby, compact little baby who wanted to be snuggled 24/7, who made the sweetest noises in the world, loved the Maya Wrap sling, and fell asleep in the crook of my arm every night.

I still see that face. I still see my toddler dancing and chatting, watching Jakers! and Nina and Star with her daddy, playing with her newborn sister, going to preschool, at her first dance class in her pink ballet leotard, helping me plan storytimes at a bookstore that closed nearly 4 years ago.

I still hear us singing along with Jack's Big Music Show, Dan Zanes, Moose & ZeeImagination Movers. Reading Goodnight Moon, The Owl and the Pussycat, Olivia, Fancy Nancy, and Angelina Ballerina over and over again. Falling asleep to me singing "Somewhere Over the Rainbow," telling her the story of "Cinderella," and finally, reading all of the Oz books for the first time.

I hear her tiny voice mispronouncing all the big words she understood better than she could speak. I see her walking on tiptoes, playing dress-up and tea party.

When she was a newborn, I remember bawling off and on for days after leaving the hospital. I was so acutely aware of how precious and fragile and fleeting that time would be. Music would set me off. She had a massage bouncer with two music settings, and I forbade one of them from being used in my presence, because I was convinced it sounded like the soundtrack to a montage in my mind, showing the passing of time from babyhood to adulthood. When Little Sis was born, I cried again, because my first baby was now a toddling two-year-old. Yes, I was a hormonal mess, both times, but these were real feelings.

This is my baby. She isn't really a baby now. She's a preteen, a fourth-grader. Her birthday party won't be until next week, but her present from her daddy was a copy of My Side of the Mountain, not Angelina Ballerina. 

She's such an amazing human being, and I am so proud of her, every single day.

Her favorite music is pop: Taylor Swift, Lorde, Adele, P!nk, Owl City, Florence + the Machine. She loves tween Disney and Nick stuff (even though she's too cool to admit it), but her favorite show is Parks & Recreation. She likes crafting and reading, and she still loves to dance, although she opted not to audition for The Nutcracker this year. She is waiting until next year, when her Little Sis can join her.

So I guess you could say I'm a hormonal mess right now. I'm a terribly sentimental mama, and it's rough, dealing with ten. What will I be like when she starts high school? College? Beyond that?

A decade as a mama. It really does feel like this journey began yesterday. I can still smell fresh babies and feel their tiny bodies in my arms.

My missing camera charger has a lot to do with my lack of blogging right now, as well as my schedule, but also, I'm in a weird spot right now. I will get back to books as soon as I can.

Our four day weekend is almost over, and I'm spending time with my babies who aren't babies.

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