Dear Emma Gracie Girl –
So we made it. You are officially five. I have been dreading this day and willing it to drag its feet and take its sweet time getting here. Yet I know it could not possibly get here fast enough for your liking. Nonetheless, it is here.
And you, my sweet, little Gracie girl, are five.
What an incredible year it has been for you.
You started preschool and it has been exactly the creative and social outlet that you needed. You have blossomed from a shy, slightly introverted, little girl into this amazingly confident, intelligent, social butterfly.
The very idea of “getting to go” to school this coming year – every. single. day. – makes your head spin with excitement. You truly are like a thirsty sponge who can’t seem to soak up enough knowledge. You are full of curious questions for everyone, eager to write everything down in your journals, and full of endless energy. I think perhaps someday you may become a writer.
Although you are also a bit obsessed with drawing lately, too. You leave sweet little drawings on my desk for me that are labeled “To: Mama, From: Emma G.” complete with drawings of the “whole family” or the flowers in our yard, or pictures of our house. All meticulously detailed. You drew a picture for your best friend Ella the other day and were so distressed as were going to her house, “I forgot to put a chimney on her house!” Thankfully when we pulled up to her house you were relieved to see that her house doesn’t have a chimney. Maybe you will become a great artist someday?
I am constantly amazed at everything you remember. We went to the aquarium recently and you were telling our friends all the names of the fishes, and which fish were coming up next in the gallery. And you can do the same thing with all of the animals at the zoo, too. And you are so curious about what the animals eat, where do they sleep, where is the baby giraffe’s Mommy? Maybe you will become a zoologist or marine biologist?
Some days you will catch me completely off guard as it is like watching a “mini-me.” You are so “first born” in your need to please everyone and you really thrive on praise. Recently, while you and Ad were playing upstairs in your rooms, I asked that you guys pick up the rooms before you came downstairs. (The two of you were doing a “show” for Addie’s stuffed animals – maybe you will become a dancer or an entertainer?)
Anyhow, you came downstairs and didn’t say anything and I kind of forgot about the mess upstairs until I went back up and found that both of your bedrooms were spotless. Not a toy or book anywhere, and you had even folded Addie’s little blankets on the bed. It brought tears to my eyes. I’ve noticed since then, and after I told you how much I appreciated how clean the rooms were, that you have been making a special effort to pick up your messes – even without me asking!
Daddy and I have often commented that you will probably become a great lawyer. You are a true negotiator, just like your Daddy. And it is usually on your Daddy that your negotiations are successful. You are good at reading just how far to push your luck, or who you can push just a little bit further. (Definitely, Daddy!)
And while negotiating is a good ability to have, I am way more thrilled with how truly thoughtful you have become. If you need a napkin, you will get one for everyone at the table. You recently got a treat from a friend at school and were opening it in the car, you squealed, “Mama! That was so nice of Timmy to put two candies in my bag – he must have known that I would then have one to give to Addie, too!” Moments like that take my breath away. Of course there are sibling squabbles, and you need to sometimes be reminded to share with your friends, but for the most part, you already know how to show everyone around you how much you care about them by doing little, thoughtful things throughout the day.
And besides just helping care for Addie, you have become one of her biggest influences. She adores every inch of you from the roots of your long hair (“I want braids like Emmy, Mama!”) to the tip of your toes. (“Can I have purple toes like Emmy, Mama?”) You are the last person she wants to see before she goes to bed, (“I need to kiss Emmy!” – For the 10th time!) and the very first person she wants to be with when she wakes up. (“Where’s Emmy? She downstairs?”) I watch you, so patiently, put your hand on her head and lean down to whisper something in her ear, and I feel like my own heart might just explode from my chest, or stop altogether, watching that lovely moment. And you make such an effort to include Ad in everything you are doing that she has started thinking that Ella and Kate are her best friends, too. She really believes that she is playing “tag” and hide-n-seek with the big kids, even if in actuality she is only running around after you. She is always watching and learning so much from you. Maybe someday you will become a teacher?
I do know that whatever you decide to “become” you are going to be a fantastic success. For now, I am content in just thinking you have just become the absolute best five year old girl in the entire world. And I’m so proud that you are our little girl.
Happy Birthday, Peanut.
I love you.