My dearest Camille Thea,
Each night when you fall asleep, a little piece of me breaks. I know in the morning you’re going to be older. It’s a silent part, I barely notice. I just feel it in the pit of my stomach, deep down the knowing rumbles and I wish I could stay in your bed instead of letting you sleep like the independent warrior you are. But tonight when you close your eyes, baby girl, my heart will shatter.
You will be another year older. You will be 4. And I’m not ready for 4, because I’ll never be ready for five or six or seven. I’ll never be ready to give up the three years you spent snuggled next to me- sometimes gently, sometimes more aggressively- nursing at night knowing I was the only one you needed.
Because now it’s not just me that you need. It’s not just Daddy that you need. It’s not just your friends, or aunts, or uncles, or our amazing extended family… it’s teachers and new friends. It’s people I don’t know.
But worst of all it’s not just me.
You are a child born to be wild. To be a strong-willed leader. To look those in the eyes who dare call you bossy and remind them that you’re their boss. That you climbed your way to the top and you didn’t step on one person to get there. You raise others up. Demand excellence in everything and everyone. From your snacks to your peers. You comfort those in need and scold those who dare think themselves less. As you rush from the house declaring your need for vanilla body spray, you never fail to remind me to grab my coffee and that you love me to the moon and back. You’re ability to comfort hurting friends and laugh with the knowledge and dry-wit of a jaded 30 year old amaze me.
I am in awe of this human that I birthed just 4 short years ago.
So when you wake up as a four-year-old, be gentle to your mama. Remember that I am celebrating but I am breaking. Because I am not ready for 4.