Monday, January 3, 2011

Minus the Baby Curls

The thing about having a five-year-old -- or, the thing about ME having a five-year-old -- is that I never really know what to expect.  She's all bashful sweetness one moment,


and the next, she's stopping me with a glaring, fiercely toned rebuttal.  Followed immediately by an apology meant to thwart discipline.  She's smart. 


She's learning how to be a little girl in a big world.  And right now, that means that she's ready to look the part.   


It's a new year for this five-year-old.  She'll be doing a lot of changing in 2011, both in knowledge of social and emotional skills, and in experiences.


Starting now; with a first haircut.  The permanent removal of her baby curls, those that carried the most perfect scent of infancy and the most golden curl of promise.


But the haircut is only the beginning of this year of changes.  Kindergarten looms.  Actually, it paces and stomps wildly behind bars, flinging its fists against its chest.  (I'm not afraid of Kindergarten.  I'm merely mindful of its power.  Promise.)


Who really knows what changes will come with Kindergarten?  Attitudes?  Friends?  Worries?  Excitement? 


But part of the magical sweetness of childhood includes not fearing those changes.  It's all anticipation, for Mia.  She's been innocently shielded from any sort of upheaval, and she expects good things. 


It's all she's ever known, really.  I've known good things as well -- so many good things I can't even begin to name them all.  I just...know a few disappointments and embarrassments and frustrations and sadnesses and regrets, too. 


And all of them seem to have hinged upon something unavoidable: growing up.  As a matter of course, growing up is inevitable.  The changes it brings, inevitable.  The possibilities for hurt, inevitable.  So maybe that's what makes me tear up when looking at her fresh, new haircut. 

Or, more hopefully, it's the knowledge that during the inevitable changes, she will find joy in the growth.


Either way, there were tears on this day.

11 comments:

  1. last night i was just thinking about my 5 year old...and wondering why he looks bigger every time i turn around. And when did he get so funny...like gets my jokes kind of funny. too fast. i told him to stay five forever. he of course protested and told me i was ridiculous!

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  2. This was so sweet, Sarah! Only you can capture a milestone like this so perfectly.

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  3. Oh how cute! I have a little one starting Kindergarten this year as well.

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  4. She's so beautiful! Our little girl embraced kindergarten with full joy--while I'll wept everyday for the first month! My mom always told me--to have a child is to forever let your heart go walking outside your body. Savor the moments!

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  5. Aw, how beautiful! And yes, kindergarten is scary - but only for us moms! Mia will love it. She may even actually look forward to going back to school after Christmas break so she can be with all her friends again, like Addie did this morning. But cherish these days when you have her around more. I soooo miss those days with my oldest! :(

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  6. Kindergarten's got nothin' on her. She will have a blast ... and so will you! (I talk like I know, but I'm really reassuring myself as much as you!) :)

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  7. What a beautiful, sweet girl!

    I remember the first day of kindergarten for all three of my boys. I never thought they would enjoy it so much, but they did. Those pre-kindergarten years are so precious and fly by so quickly, but the rest of it is pretty special, too.

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  8. Beautiful. We can't stop changes, but it does make the journey easier if we can embrace it on the way.

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  9. She is so beautiful. But...kindergarten? Already? Wow.

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  10. So sweet! And she looks adorable! But I would have cried, too.

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  11. You're making me teary just thinking about cutting hair! I bawled the day we gave G and E their first haircuts. It seems like such a big, visual step.

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Hmm...And how did that make you FEEL?