As usual, I woke early and sit in the quiet dark of the house. This morning my thoughts are all towards my daughter. Today is her birthday. She is finally 5 years old. She is so beautiful and seemingly mature. She is learning to read, and loves to do math. Any time music plays, anywhere, she breaks into dance. This is why I call her Dancer Girl. Even when she was in my belly growing and growing, she seemed to wiggle, stretch, and twist. I will never forget that early ultrasound where she was jumping and leaping across the screen. Well, she has never stopped.
In fact, very soon after we got home from the hospital, I found that one of the only ways to get her to calm down and get to sleep was to bounce, sway, and dance with her. No rocking chair for her, too confining, she didn't like bumping her feet and head. I tell you, she couldn't be still. When I was pregnant, I always found myself standing and dancing, or swaying when music was on, I was so happy. I did this even in church. I would get out of my seat and stand in the back, where I had plenty of room, and dance as much as I wanted. Even to this day, if Dancer Girl comes to the big church service instead of her class, she wants to stand in the back and dance. And I let her.
So this morning, I am thinking of her. Last year, on her birthday she woke up to a bed filled with balloons (actually I did this on every one's birthday last year but mine, ha ha). That was so much fun. But this year, I am trying to think of something different to start the day. I am thinking of showing baby pictures, telling birth stories, and sharing the letters her grandma wrote to her when she was growing in my belly. And, of course, sing her all the birthday songs I know. That is pretty ambitious. I will probably just play it by ear.
I love parties, and of course my children have had big parties every year. So much fun. This year is no different. We finally settled on a flip-flop/hula kind of theme. I haven't had many RSVP's so I hope plenty of people come. Regardless of who comes, I know we will have a good time. For the party, we are making our own hula skirts. There are the leis, the flowers for the hair. We are going to make hula girl hand puppets. We even found a flip-flop cake at Wal-Mart. I even made flip-flop sugar cookies. You could kind of say that I have gone a little overboard.
Anyway, today will be a quiet family day about her. Ok, it will probably not be quiet. There will be lots of singing. There are two quotes (ok, there are not only two, do you really think Motherkitty could stop at only two quotes? just teasing mom....that means I love you, by the way) that my mom wrote in the letters to my daughter before she was born that really mean a lot to me:
"There is a season for everything, a time for every occupation under heaven: A time for giving birth, a time for dying; a time for planting, a time for uprooting what has been planted. A time for killing, a time for healing; a time for knocking down, a time for building. A time for tears, a time for laughter; a time for mourning, a time for dancing. A time for throwing stones away, a time for gathering them up; a time for embracing, a time to refrain from embracing. A time for searching, a time for losing; a time for keeping, a time for throwing away. A time for tearing, a time for sewing; a time for keeping silent, a time for speaking. A time for loving, a time for hating; a time for war, a time for peace." Ecclesiastes 3:1
The poet Carl Sandburg said, "A baby is God's opinion that the world should go on."
I love you, Dancer Girl, more than you know. I am so proud of you. I love to see you happy, and dancing. I hate to see you crying, and sad. You are a gift to me from God, another way God has chosen to say that he loves me. There was a time in my life when I didn't think I deserved to be a mother, a time when I thought it would never happen. But when I see you, Dancer Girl, it is proof of God's love and grace, just for me. And that is why part of your name means "full of mercy". That is one of the prayers that your father and I have for you, that you will grow up to be a woman who is full of mercy, love, and compassion for others. We love you so much. We love you more than 100, 000 million :)