Still Growing Up

We have a big birthday in the house – the kind that makes you question where all the years disappeared to. It only seems five minutes ago I was picking her out of her cot from a nap, or picking up the tupperware from the floor where she’d thrown it. My youngest daughter is a teenager.

When she was little she didn’t sleep well. She now loves going to bed late and lying in on a weekend. She didn’t like green vegetables and now eats pretty much anything she has in front of her. She loved princess dresses and play shoes and now wears pastel jumpers and skinny jeans. She cried when I dropped her off at school and now slams the door each morning laughing with her friends and hollering “see you!” She clung to me when going to drama club and now sings solos and shows me her street dancing moves in the kitchen. She was small and I could scoop her up in my arms, but now she’s taller than me and apprently can very nearly do the splits.

She leaves piles of clean clothes on her floor for weeks; argues with her sister; doesn’t practice her instruments enough; tells me she loves me; gets scared of lightening; takes a long time in the shower; makes me laugh by doing silly accents; hugs us every day; cringes at romantic movies; does her homework; drives me mad; makes me proud.

Last year was a zoom call birthday. This year it’s 5 teenagers playing games, eating chips and watching a movie. Thank goodness, although last year there was less washing up.

I’m feeling old I guess, and a little nostalgic for the toddler who wanting picking up and when I said “no” said “I don’t want you to pick me up I want a walking hug”. I could lose an hour or two watching her on video carrying her cuddly pig while playing a harmonica, but actually I won’t today. Instead I’ll listen out for the laughter drifting up the stairs, watch her cut her cake and wait for her to tell me what she wants to tell me. Happy Birthday sweetie.

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