Sunday, 14 August 2011

nine

Could there be a more perfect photo to capture my girl?

So alive! So full of the wonder and joy us old folks only dimly remember.  A cake on it's second outing, some candles left over from a past birthday and it might as well have been a masterpiece in gold.

She loves everything, except the boring bits at school, eating meat and emptying the dishwasher. She especially loves being herself, dressing in a way that isn't about blending in but about putting herself out there. She loves hatching an idea and acting on it, no matter how ill conceived or brilliant. She is determined and can't be deterred by wise advice, or even threats, and good on her. She'll argue her case like the best barrister, and sulk like the best drama queen.

She isn't great with routines or the development of good habits, she totally just takes it how she feels it should be taken at the time. Like, whatever.  She isn't like me at all in this, and at times her inability to settle into a groove drives me nuts, especially when she's trying to find her (undone) homework or get piano practice done. But I also know if I chuck her somewhere she's never been before with a brand new situation to deal with she'll get herself together quick smart and find something just great in it.

As she gets older the balance between trying to teacher her, parent her, and simply observing her develop into her own person is changing. It gets no less challenging, it just changes every day. She makes me think long and hard about myself, and her, and who I am as a parent and how I can help her be who she is in the best possible way. All the time and in all different ways.

It makes me proud how often people tell me what a great kid she is, how she is polite and helpful, how wonderful she is with little kids and adults alike. I know she isn't always like this at home and I  can often be found balling her out about the dirty socks in her bed, clothes shoved down the back of the wardrobe on the sly, lost library books and whining about doing jobs. But no one's on the top of their game all the time and better she be well behaved when she needs to be. And knows the difference.

I'm also extremely proud that she values the things we make for ourselves so highly, and so much more so than the things we buy. For a kid who loves to shop so much more than I am comfortable with it fills me with gladness how often she says with pride look what I made, or yeah, my mum made that, isn't she clever? She gets me and I think I'm pretty lucky that she bothers to take the time to try and figure me out.

I was sick this year on the special day and it was hard not to feel like I let her down, despite how beyond my control it was and how completely understanding she was about it. Still. We rainchecked a fancy dinner out and there's plenty of days to enjoy each other's company. I couldn't wish for a better companion on the ride.

10 comments:

Donyale said...

What a lovely post and wonderful homage to a daughter that is seemingly so like mine she may have a doubleganger in NSW.

Tania said...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY KIDDO.

(Seems 'your' Nine and 'my' Nine have quite some things in common - mine especially hates dishwasher emptying).

Trash said...

Happy Birthday to your lovely girl. The ride is brilliant and just keeps getting better.

angelasavage said...

Happy Birthday Amy. Gorgeous post, Sooz.

Leonie said...

Happy Birthday to Miss 9, it's amazing how quick the time goes. She's a lovely lass and it's nice that she gets your need to craft, priceless!

Ali said...

Happy Birthday Amy - that was a truly lovely post.

iHanna said...

Oh, such beautiful photos of a very pretty girl. Love the first one, where she is about to blow the candles. Super cute!

Belinda said...

Happy birthday Amy, hope your day was as unique and lovely as you!
Watching your kids grow up is truly one of life's greatest gifts.

sewjourn said...

Happy Birthday to your gorgeous daughter! Enjoy....my youngest was nine in July, I can't believe how quickly the time flies past.

Deb said...

What a lovely post about your daughter. Really lovely.
D
x