Tuesday, January 11, 2011
19 month old letter to Ella
You are a little more than 19 months old. You amaze me with your warmth and laughter. Your personality is blossoming a little more, every day. You have such a sense of self, even at 19 mo, which, I know sounds silly, but you do. The other day, we were coming back from Target. I had mounds of groceries, houseware stuff and also had you in tow. I set you down so that I could get a better grip of the bag and my hand, instinctively, reached for yours. We don't do this often, this hand holding thing, because 1) we are never anywhere where you would need to hold my hand (I am not letting you cross a Chicago street without you being close against my person and 2) I just kinda prefer holding you as I know that it won't be much longer that I can hold you, and you let me. As my hand reached down, you grabbed it, smiled at me and I melted. Right there in our garage, I looked down at this little girl who smiled as she held my hand. It makes my eyes well up with sadness seeing how fast you are growing up...
My heart swells with pride for you everyday. I think about how much I love you and wonder if you will ever know, aside from having children of your own, of how much I could possibly love and adore you? It's a tedious and tricky relationship, this relationship b/w a daughter and a mother. I want so much to be the best momma I can by you, to be the kind of person you admire and respect. The kind of of woman you could aspire to be without knowing that any admirable attribute I might possess was only realized by being your mother. By loving you. By watching you grow up. I saw the following line on a blog that stuck with me, "I want, more than anything, to do right by you. I want to be someone who is easy for you to love, easy for you to fold yourself into when you most need me. I also want to be easy to walk away from, easy to be apart from. What a funny combination. What a challenge". What a challenge it will be, bug. I came to Chicago, on a wing (err, Honda) and a prayer, and these abounding hope of something new and exciting. To make my own way. To meet interesting people and to be inspired. Oh, how God knew what I needed more than I ever did. I met your father and the rest is history, and your beginning. Your beginning has made me feel like a complete person, to be your mother..
I shudder to think of how this relationship b/w us could veer south, but I want you to know that i will always strive to be the bigger person, because, after all, I am your mother. I will do my best to not hold grudges or be envious of all that you achieve. I want you to succeed and accomplish more than I ever could. Most importantly, I want you to always remember just how much I love you, at your 19 month birthday, of just how much I will always support you and be there for you, no matter what. I will always shower you with "I love you's" even when I am not happy about your choices because, after all, I always will. I hope you will do the same, too.
I am battling through my inherited trait of helicopter-ing. I do need to step back a bit more, move aside from my own thoughts and desires for you to make the choices you feel like you need to make. You are an amazing little bundle of self awareness and precociousness. You are already marching to the beat of your own drum and throw caution to the wind and let loose. Already. I want you to always be proud of yourself and of these traits I admire so much.
I couldn't love you more as we barrel towards your 2nd birthday. I love you with all my heart, little nugget, and pray that God keeps you safe from harm as we figure out this whole thing together. I will try to be the best guide I know how.
Love you for always,
Posted by Nicole Francis at 11:29 AM