Wednesday, June 17, 2009

The Fun that is "Four"

Oh, we had a special day around here. All the magic that makes up a birthday for a little girl who is old enough to understand what the day is about, and expect wonderful events to unfold one after the other. She is very "into" her birthday this year. Four is such a fun age!
This is part of a conversation we had last night after the lights were out and I was tucking her into bed. She said to me, in an excited whisper:

"On the night before my birthday, the birthday fairy will fly around looking for letters. She will flutter through my window and swoop down over my head. Girl fairies visit birthday girls and boy fairies visit birthday boys. They don't use sleighs, just Santa uses a sleigh. Fairies have wings so they don't need to borrow Santa's sleigh.

The birthday fairy will bring lots of balloons and leave them floating around my bed. If I hear fluttering in my ears tonight, I won't be scared, 'cause it's just the birthday fairy and she's nice. She will bring me a prize."

Translation for adults: We wrote a letter to the birthday fairy the night before her big day. I wrote what was dictated to me, and Roo decorated it. In our note, we told the birthday fairy how many balloons Roo wanted: four, of course! :) I told Roo that I would post the note in her bedroom window. I explained how the fairies fly around during the night and stop in the bedroom of any boy or girl with a note in their window. The fairy reads the note and leaves the requested number of balloons right above the sleeping birthday girl (or boy). When they awake, they see the balloons bopping about the ceiling, and know that the fairy was there during the night. I also leave a little trail of glitter along the windowsill and on the strings of the balloons --as they must have been clutched very tightly in the fairy's hands as she flew about the night sky! Surely, one of the most magical of the birthday surprises (or "prizes," as Roo says).

So, after starting her morning off with a balloon bouquet above her bed, Roo rose to start her special day: breakfast and snacks of her choosing; a visit from Grandma; making bug soap while wearing her new bug shirt, naturally! Also on tap: opening presents (some for her, some belated gifts for Rascal), helping Grandma in the kitchen: making and eating birthday cupcakes, reading new books, getting special deliveries from near and far -- complete with "Happy Birthday" wishes and drawings on the outside of the packages.

While feeding Rascal in bed, I was hoping my birthday girl would stay awake until I was finished. But, after the day's excitement, she was asleep as soon as her head hit the pillow. So, after Rascal drank himself into a little milk coma (thankfully! he's teething horribly and suffering so), I tiptoed over to Roo's bedside. She was hugging her new doll and was snuggled so peacefully under her quilt. I glanced at the clock and noticed it was 6:57 pm. Exactly 10 minutes (plus 4 years) past her "birth." I climbed into her bed, wrapped my arms around her, and I was transported back 4 years earlier: to when I held this brand-new life in my arms, stroking her velvet-soft cheeks and downy hair. Now here I was, 4 years later, my arms still wrapped around her and stroking those same cheeks and hair--still so velvety-soft. Waves of emotion swept over me. I said a little birthday prayer:

God to bless this precious life before me. Keep her safe, happy, healthy. Help her to keep You front and center in all that she does. May she fearlessly chase her dreams and embrace life fully. Lord, guide her steps and help her become the person You created her to be. Please, may I be blessed to learn and grow alongside her.

After I prayed over her, my eyes welled with tears. Motherhood has been the most heart-expanding, soul-stirring, fulfilling, and challenging metamorphosis I've ever undergone. I'm thankful. I'm grateful. It's good to be Mom. Definitely the role of a lifetime.

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