At the end of last month, the middle girl of my very own kid sandwich (flanked by older sister and younger brother), turned nine. Nine. Yes, I know parents decry the unbelievability of this all the time but I can assure you I mean it more than they. Was it really nine years ago that I pushed her out, with nary a drug for pain? Was it really nine years ago that I had the absolute best birth experience of my three children? The birth after which I could have skipped down the hallway and might have even tried? She is the smiler, the singer, the dancer, the I’m happy just because one.
She had a sleepover for her birthday, a total of six girls (and the boy who drove them crazy). I was still suffering from the BlogHerbola, so I wasn’t as much fun as I normally would have been (I am fun, dammit!). I took them to the pool.
I let them jump until their legs gave out in the moonbounce, made dinner followed by cupcakes, then left them to their devices. Please find a game to play; mommy needs to lie down because SUDAFED LOOPY.
She is tall. She is all legs. She is fiercely protective of her brother and though theirs is a rocky relationship sometimes, she is decidedly in love with her sister.
She calls me at work to say hi. She helps with dinner, even when I want to prepare it alone (I let her because I know it makes her happy). She loves pickles, avocado, Brussels sprouts, tacos, and ice cream. She loves stuffed animals, cartwheels, lip gloss, and baths that don’t result in water in the bathroom below it. No, wait, that last part is just daddy and me. She can be stubborn and when she pouts my whole body aches. She gives the best hugs, at random. She says I love you without provocation, kind of like hey, guess what? She loves to paint her nails, effectively jacking up the right hand every time. I tell her it looks great.
Nine years. Fourth grade. Immeasurable love. She is one of three. She is Zoe and I love her.