SIX

Six years you’ve been my roommate, my best friend, my mini me, my happiness, my frustration and on some days, my rock.

And my goodness, has the transition into little girl has begun.

I’ve got bottles of nail polish and chapstick, because you know we aren’t stepping into that world of lipstick quite yet, all over the place. I have a flat iron in the bathroom that I pretend every morning I know how to use but is mostly just me praying I don’t burn a chunk of hair out of your head as I tame the morning hair beast. There is a stash of hair bows, some are hideous Jovi, that I still can’t figure out how to get them to stay in your hair on some days. And those silly hair ties, they are dumb. They are too small for me to figure out with my fingers.

I have found myself over the past few months, watching you grow, mature, becoming a girl, and have prayed for it to slow. To stop for just a moment longer to enjoy these moments just a little more. Dressing up in boas, wearing chalk on our faces like we are the live version of William Wallace, taking silly pictures that usually involve you making that singular face you have made your own, playing soccer in the front yard and sneaking handfuls of cheese while cooking, all the while denying you even did it to the other.

I asked you the other day just to take a break on growing. Deep down, I meant it. You on the other hand want nothing to do with that.

With all of this, I have learned the incredible value of not saying “hurry up.” I try to say it as little as possible, because there will be one day I will wish for all of those fleeting seconds of hurry back. If we are a few minutes late, who cares. Especially if we are having fun. Don’t tell Cathy I said that.

One of my favorite parts of the day is picking you up from school, seeing your face and the running jump into my arms, learning about your day and racing you to the car, even in the rain. You know some of those kids and parents think we are crazy with our greetings right?

I know one day, I will completely miss these things. Even the 4am wake ups with you, your blanket and the penguin, asking me to scoot over and hold you because something scared you. Or the need to have marshmallows or tic tacs, orange of course, constantly around for payment when you change roles to my junior designer and do some of my project work for me.

All of it is worth it. Always

Remember a few birthday’s ago, I wrote this…

One day someone will walk through the door and blow us away. We will fist bump to commemorate the moment and then discuss how everything to that moment had prepared us for this. Hopefully that’s sooner than later but you get the point.

We did it!

I’m thankful for the relationship Cathy and you have. How you love and want to spend time with her and how she thinks of you a lot. Our two man group has finally become a trio. But let’s be honest, once we all live under the same roof, Cathy will probably need to find some extracurricular activities at night before you and I drive her absolutely crazy with our loud music, silly games and playing dodgeball in the house. By the way, the front part of her house is so big. That could be an amazing dodgeball area. Keep that between us.

I was so proud of what you accomplished in kindergarten this year. You absolutely blew past the requirements and crushed it…all of this after I questioned how you would do in school when you had already had a referral, a principal visit with a meeting with the principal and your parents, all before the first month of school had even ended. That was a real joy right there. But from that point on, you never looked back.

I’m proud of you. Proud of everything you have accomplished this year and how hard you’ve worked to read. I’m even more proud of the person you are becoming. You treat people with love no matter who they are, the color of their skin or where they come from. You showed me a lot by asking me three days into school for us to get there early and walk in with Olivia since she was struggling to walk into school alone. Or the messages I get from your CEP teachers where they say you are the first to go play with a kid all of the other ones are ignoring. Evermore, how much the kids in your class truly love you. I have a feeling a lot of that is because of the love you show them.

But with all of this, promise me this…promise to never hide your crazy. It’s so much fun to watch you sing, dance and do life like no one is watching. It will do you well down the road. Just don’t do it during learning time. The goal is to chill on the notes home from teachers that say how great you are doing, except the fact that you like to sing while you work, every once in a while, draw instead of do said work and dance in the hallways. Just chill at those moments.

Here’s to year six where we get to go through a lot of changes…all of them good. We will leave this place, something that has been our home for six years, as we head to Cathy’s. And no…we are not packing up and moving tomorrow. Stop asking. We will get there…I promise. Our duo now becomes a trio and between you and I, we are super lucky to get Cathy. First, look at her. Yeah, I know…I ask myself how all the time. Second, she loves both of us. That’s pretty special. Finally, she’s seen us together a lot and still has the ring on. Not many that see us together would jump in feet first and say let’s do that. But she has and I’m thankful.

So here’s to year six…where our climb continues to go up and you and Cathy continue to make me feel like the luckiest dude in the world.

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pic from my pal @darkbluephotography