An Open Letter to My Growing Children
We’ve been lucky enough to have our friend and writer Ka’ala Byndon grace our blog in the past, and we’re honored to have her back today with a letter to her daughters that will tug at your heart strings. We could go on for ages about how beautiful her words are and how they make you feel all the things, but since she’s the real wordsmith, we should probably just let her take it from here.
My sweet, smart, sensational, and strong-willed girls, There was a time not too long ago that you fed at my breast and you only slept on my chest. There was a time not too long ago that your skin was wrinkly and your hands were so small they could barely grasp my finger. Wild right? We actually had challenges getting you both to grow the way those silly charts say you should. But I never should have worried because boy did you get big on me! Just when we thought you would stay tiny forever, the tags on your clothes went from reading NB to 0-3, then 3-6 and beyond. But if I close my eyes just tight enough and breathe deep enough, I swear I can still smell that sweet breath you had before your teeth came in. I wish I could bottle it up. It's hard to believe but you have been changing and growing since before you were born. And in the months and years ahead, that won't stop. But what will forever stay the same is my love for you. It's unwavering and I hope you always feel it. My oldest girl: You've hit some huge milestones recently. From diapers to big girl underwear in the blink of an eye, so it seemed. You went from having my total attention to sharing it with your baby sister - literally overnight. And that was hard. But you did it so gracefully (mostly). You take your big sister role so seriously it makes me proud to be your mother and excited to see you lead the way for your siblings to come. And to my littlest one: You are outgrowing clothing before we can even put it on. You are exploring new territories and trying new things. (I would love for your next new thing to be sleeping through the night). You are curious and eager. Joy-filled and expressive. I can't wait to see who you'll become, yet at the same time I don't want you to change. You'll be going off to school in the years ahead. I can already envision your backpack looking too big for your body. And what your hair will look like on picture day. I can see the leaves stuck to your coily curls at recess and the bubbles you blow in your drink at lunch. I can imagine the silly questions you'll ask your teacher but I can't yet imagine you sitting still. It all makes me excited and sad. Does that seem strange? That I feel excited and sad together? I'm sure one day you'll understand. Is it crazy of me to think that it won't be too long before you learn how to drive? I'll have so many rules for you so don't go making plans right away. I'll most likely tell you what my mama told me: pretend there's a glass of water on the dashboard. Don't spill it. You'll also learn love. In a different way than the one we share. You'll learn love and the many beautiful and new feelings that come with it. You'll learn how you love and how you like to be loved. You'll learn that love sometimes ends in loss. You'll learn hurt and you'll learn heartache and it's gonna make your heart ache ...but you'll be okay. I'll pick up ice cream on the way home and tell you all about my first heartbreak. (If you want me to). And one day, you'll be off to pave your own way. And I honestly can't write too much about that because I'm just not ready. But I know the day will come. And when it does, remember this: My babies, I'll carry you in my arms as long as my arms allow. Then I'll carry you in my heart the way I do right now. Either way, I'll carry you. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Love, mama