This year has been braces and back handsprings and you got glasses but thought it would be better if you took your chances. Your little sister was born and you gladly gave her your room. You rode horses with your Mama, shot your first deer with your Daddy. You started collecting these particular little stuffed animals because your cousins suggested it.
You and your friends made bracelets with rubber bands.
You took a break from all the songwriting you used to do.
You grew tall and thin to the point you quizzed me, Am I too skinny?
No, sweetie. You're absolutely perfect or maybe you're too awesome. Stop being so awesome, you little freak.
And there you were the same as you ever are. The you from all those years ago still hopping on one foot, still saying look at me. Still trying to please. Still radiating your own particular joy in this sometimes crazy world.
The other day you asked me, Can you stay here beside me?
Yes. Of course, I said.
This morning I thought again about that question and what a privilege it is to be asked.
Today I am grateful for you, for being able to watch you change your mind, your clothes, your hair, your accessories while knowing there is that part of you, that part I know to be you, which will remain.