Today was Princess's 11th birthday. Unless you have children, you don't understand the blood, sweat, & tears that goes into planning -- even if the event is a "low key" one. Princess's birthday is usually spread out over a weekend or so, simply so she can have a party with her friends, do something in her classroom, have a family get together, and do something with Mimi. This year was no different... except it was.
I don't know why it hit me like it did this year, but when I dropped her off at school Thursday I saw in her face the teen she's becoming. I'm not complaining so much as stating a fact. And, it's not just her face... her whole outlook on life is changing. She's making more decisions on her own; she's pulling away from me more & more. Maybe I'm a little bit crazy, but in a way, I like it.
Don't get me wrong; she's still very much attached to me. But, she's starting to find herself, as well -- her own music, her own shows, her own opinions... I can have actual life conversations with her; not worrying I'm "going over her head".
To date, she has:
1. Chosen teaching as her future career. Now, I realize (of course) that this may (& probably will) change before she goes to college, but as of right now, she's had this plan since 2nd grade.
2. Chosen to adopt her future children. It used to be about the pain involved in child-birth, but evolved into realizing how many kids there are out there with shitty parents who need a good, loving home. Her own experiences have helped shape that view.
3. Chosen how we safely invest her money. Granted, we've only given her safe options to consider, and she knows there are not-so-safe ways to invest your money, too (like the stock market -- where we currently have about 10% of our worth invested). She has some in her savings, to spend on birthdays, Xmas, etc... The rest is invested in a CD at our credit union. She also, btw, chose how long to invest. Her exact words, "Mom, until the interest rates come back up, we're only doing a year at a time."
4. Decided that her college education comes before children. While she may get married while still in college, she "will not" (her insistence) have/adopt her children until she is done & has a good job to support those kids.
5. Decided that she'd like to stay living within a couple hours drive time from Ace & I. We would, I think, love that.
The point is not that she has her life kinda mapped out; obviously some or all of this could change in the next 7 - 10 years (or more, for that matter)... but having a plan and changing it to accommodate life is a better option than having no plan, and therefore, no direction.
And, really, all I wanted to say was this: I love my daughter with everything I have and more, and I couldn't be more proud of her than I am right now. Feliz Cumpleaños, mija. Te amo.