Today you turn 9. Nine! Nine does not even seem possible. That means you have been a part of my life for one quarter of it. And yet, it is hard for me to remember my adult life without you in it.
You are an amazing human being. You are so smart, I see your brain working all the time, and when you are really concentrating you stick your tongue out, maybe it gives you more surface area to do all that thinking.
You are very athletic, you pick sports up quickly and you are good at them. You get discouraged, but you are learning that if you practice at something you will get even better at it.
You are shy. Very shy when you are in new situations and you do much better when you are the first person in a room and others come to you. Again I see this changing and you are becoming more comfortable and confident in new situations.
You are becoming more adventurous, taking more calculated risks and trusting yourself more and I am thoroughly enjoying watching you take those risks and try new things- even food!
You have the most amazing heart. Your entire life, you have always been the person to go up to the new person in the classroom and introduce yourself and start playing with them. You have friends with disabilities and friends who are different in some way from your other friends. I’ve never asked you if you notice the differences, if I were to guess, I would say you don’t.
You have a great imagination, you act out whole scenes with your Polly Pockets or in your doll house, you tell stories and continue them for weeks and weeks, always picking back up exactly where you left off in the ‘game’.
You are stubborn just like me, and I hope I am helping you to learn how to channel that stubbornness into stick-to-itiveness so that you don’t struggle with it as much as I did.There are times that I hold my breath and watch you make mistakes and learn lessons and each time I see you get hurt my heart aches because I want nothing more than to take that hurt away. And I know I can’t do that, that we all become who we are because of the trials, tribulations, successes and failures we encounter. My heart and mind still aren’t really on the same page with that one- but we’re working on it.
There are days when I feel like the world is caving in around me and I just want to sit down and cry, and then I come to pick you up, and still, you still at 9 come running to me and jump up into my arms and in that moment my world is righted and I find the strength and the courage to continue to fight the good fight. I promise to continue to catch you in my arms as long as you continue to run and jump into them- no matter how old either one of us is.
So today on your ninth birthday I wish you a wonderful day, a year filled with amazing new adventures and achievements and tell you that I look forward to sharing each and every one of them with you. I love you, Sunshine.