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Saturday, June 26, 2010

In the meadow with Liv

This young lady keeps asking me to take her picture.  And I keep accommodating her because irrationally if I deny her this, her self-confidence might vanish with all things that disappear as you transition from childhood to youth to adult.    Personally I remember 13 being all buck-teeth, knock-kneed, awkward, and not so Oh mama, would you please take my picture 'cause I look so good today.  Surely that confidence comes from her father's side of the family.

When Liv was a wee babe, she was scared of everything.  She was the child that was literally behind my skirts.  Candles, dogs, ceiling fans and more all seemed to scare her very soul.  We tried to start preschool when she was 4 years old thinking she needed... thinking she needed... something.  It was a huge failure.  Same wonderful preschool and same wonderful teachers her older sister had.  It was 2 weeks of her banishing herself to the corner of the classroom, crying silent tears.  We thought maybe she was just one of those kiddos that needed more time to adjust.  When she started waking with nightmares, we knew it was time to pull her.  She slept in our bed that night, in that state of twilight, not quite asleep but not awake either.  She had those little spasms that follow a good heavy cry.  Papa and I looked at each other.  Despite surrendering the first and last month's tuition, NO preschool was the obvious choice.  Liv, we're not going to go to preschool tomorrow.  Or the next day.  Maybe we'll try school again when your 5 years old.
She looked directly in my eyes... Maybe when I'm 6.  She closed her eyes and slept deeply for the first time in weeks.

We consciencly held this child closer for many years.  Hugged her more firmly.  Ran to her falls more quickly.  Cracked the door wider at night.  Pushed her less.  A brighter bulb in her nightlight.  Looked into her eyes a bit longer.
In hopes that this extra security would provide her with deep roots to grow broad strong wings.

Then I blinked.
And this happened.
She's nearly 14.

A lover of roller coasters.  Will try any food.  The first to jump into any adventure and brave the unknown.  Likes to strike out on her own business ventures.  Tells it like she sees it.  She was our natural choice to take to VeitNam as a work horse, when we adopted T&J .  She likes to point out my flaws.  She likes to right the injustices of the world.  Picked a highschool her friends are not going to.  She wants to travel to third world countries and volunteer in orphanages.   She is the moral police of the Crazy 8.  She's confident not being the center of attention.  When I slip into my Irish Catholic profanity, (which HARDLY ever happens!) she is the first to look me square in the eye and express her disapproval.  (OK it sometimes rarely happens. And ps-I'm not Irish Catholic.)  I am simply in awe of this child.  I am in awe that I may have a small tiny part in the result before me, regardless of the obvious parenting blunders.

Another Ordinary Miracle.


  1. WOW, gorgeous!! The pictures are really stunning and I just love the way you described your mothering journey with your daughter. She has truly blossomed :)
    Happy Sunday!

  2. Gracious that was a precious post! I have to go reapply my mascara before church now as I also just watching your making of the Crazy 8 video! Sniff-sob--happy tears. So awesome! Have a great day!

  3. I love your post- it was my favorite read this Sunday :)

    As a teacher, I also love the fact that you really listened to your child when so many parents don't these days. Thanks for sharing!

  4. What a beautiful post...and a beautiful daughter....

    Amazing photos!!

    Thanks for sharing!!!


  5. I LOVE this, and it totally gives me hope for the future of my little M. Thanks so much!


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