five

Oh, how the time passes.  I’m a little late in posting this, but my baby recently turned five years old. Five.

Dear Evelyn,

Try not to laugh at my sad little “5” cake.  I like to bake and decorate your birthday cakes on my own, even if I am certainly no expert. This year, we had your first friends party that wasn’t at our house. We had a pool party at the YMCA.  I’m not gonna sugar coat it though.  December birthdays suck.  Between the holidays and the weather, a lot of people we invited weren’t able to make it, but you didn’t notice and you had a lot of fun.

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Five years ago the start of kindergarten seemed like a million years away and now your birthday has come and gone and kindergarten looms ever nearer. You just keep on changing.  Lately, you have been so proud of how many things you can do for yourself.  There are so many cool things about five.

Your dad finally “trained” you to go to sleep on your own at night.  We still do our normal bedtime routine…three books, mom or dad sits with you for 3 songs, and then it’s hugs and kisses and goodnight.  Most of the time you don’t put up a fight.  Occasionally, you wrap your little arms around my neck and ask me to stay.  Sometimes you’ll tell your dad that he can leave the room and recently you told him that soon you will be bigger and you won’t need anyone to stay with you at bedtime.

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You are so proud of yourself when you can get dressed on your own, which is most of the time if you choose to do it.  A few weeks ago, Grandma got you some Converse shoes that actually have laces and you insisted that you needed to learn how to tie right then and there. Of course, you got really frustrated when you couldn’t accomplish the task on the first try….just like your old mom.

We’ve started giving you chores to do and you love to help out around the house. A few days ago you said,  “Thank you, mom!” when I asked you to clean something.

For your birthday this year, we got you a karaoke machine.  You have always loved to sing and that hasn’t changed.  Just today, you told me “I love to sing every day.” We watched the movie Annie for the first time and you said, “Wow, that girl is a really good singer.” You make up your own songs and you get mad at us if we try to sing with you, especially if we don’t sing it exactly the way you think it should be done.

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Lately, when you get mad or frustrated at us, or if you don’t get your way, you stomp up to your bedroom, shut the door and draw a picture at your desk.  The picture usually depicts whatever wrongdoing we have inflicted on you, but by the time you are finished with it, you are usually giggling as you descend the stairs to show it to us.

You draw happy pictures too.  They are not all bad.

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You are obsessed with babies and any kid who’s younger than you, really.  You have an imaginary sister, and imaginary brother, and a large number (100 I think) of imaginary “cousins” who were displaced by a fire in their home and you invited them to come and live with us. We have to save places at the dinner table and you even take your “siblings” to church with you sometimes. You are struggling right now to understand things like love and marriage.  You told me recently that you are going to marry your classmate James.  When I asked you what makes him special, you told me that you “didn’t expect it, but you just fell in love with him.” I’m glad that many of these conversations happen in the car and you can’t see me chuckling at you as you tell me in all seriousness. You also ask about death a lot.  Your brain is struggling to process all these big concepts.  You often ask me what will happen if I die or if Daddy dies or if we both die.  The worst part (to me) about you asking these questions is that you don’t seem to be the slightest bit worried about that happening.  I think you are more interested in thinking about how your life might be different (like you could go to live with the Dobos family, as you once suggested)!

This year you are taking a tumbling class instead of dance.  You seem to like it.  You still love to dance and you like to dance along with music videos.  You also like to do yoga and you are especially fond of the Gummy Bear song, mainly because the little gummy bear’s butt crack shows in the video.  You’re kind of into butts and poop and farts right now.  Ha.

I started teaching preschool again this year. It’s been 10 years, so I am a little out of practice.  You are in one of the other classes, just down the hall, and you teach me songs and games and all kinds of fun things that I get to try out with my kids.  You’re a pretty awesome preschool consultant.

You’re still giving us a run for our money sometimes.  You had a pretty big breath holding spell right around Christmas time, after a year of being spell-free.  I was certain that we had seen the end of them, but you reminded us that you are still our little girl who needs a little extra understanding now and then.

I’m sure that five is just the beginning of many years of you wishing to be just a bit older, but it’s the number that once seemed so far away to this first-time mom and it’s the number of years I have been pleading that time would slow down just a little….

Five.

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