August, 2005: Princess & I walked down our newly constructed sidewalk to sign her up for Kindergarten. I was told a couple weeks later that (GOOD NEWS) due to a Title 1 grant, her school was not only hiring a third kinder teacher, but that the kinders were to go full time (all day, five days)!
September, 2005: Princess & I walked down the sidewalk with her backpack, and me carrying an extra paper sack, both full of school supplies. She was nervous; didn't want me to leave. I told her I'd stay as long as she needed me. In walked another little girl with her older sister. The little girl was crying hysterically. Princess looked at me, rolled her eyes, and said, "Mom, you can go now. I'm okay." She came home from school and told me about her new friends, Katrina & Kaylee.
July, 2006: First day of rec league soccer, thanks to the suggestion of her new friend, Katrina. She would play for seven more seasons... and remain Katrina's friend. Kaylee, sadly, moved away.
Summer, 2007: First trip overseas with Mimi - to LONDON!
September, 2007: Second grade comes with the loss of a few old friends, but Lillian moved here.
October, 2007: Princess's life took a sour turn; one that would stay with her and make her grow up faster than anyone ever should... her biological father & her stepmother abducted her from our home. Although returned physically safe, she is irrevocably emotionally damaged. All trust toward them is gone; completely destroyed by their selfish actions.
December, 2007: Court order clarified to read that Princess' bio shall have his parenting time suspended until he pays the child support in full & continues to be on time, he pays the first four attorney's fees judgments, and a few other things (judging by the last four & half years... I'd say there's a snowball's chance in hell of him ever paying me what he owes me). Princess' 2nd grade teacher, Mr. S, was a huge & fantastic male role model for her that year (aside from her beloved Papa, of course). She decided to be a teacher.
3rd grade... Kira moved into the neighborhood. Kira's mother & I discover we went to high school together. :)
4th grade ...
5th grade... More trips overseas with Mimi, every summer somewhere different.
Mr M for 6th grade; another fabulous male role model. She's now decided she wants to be a hairdresser when she grows up; she wants to work side by side with me -- me doing nails & her doing hair.
May, 2012: I set up a hair appointment (cut/bleach/color) with my salon's owner, and an updo appt with Princess' school's PTA president (who's also a hairdresser). We found a nice dress she can also wear to her Youth Group director's wedding, and shoes to match.
June, 2012: I do her nails to match her dress... 6th grade completion ceremony is creeping up fast. Princess decides to call her bio. She tells him she doesn't want him there, and why. He gripes & tries the blame game, but she's not buying it. When he doesn't show to graduation, she turns to me and gives me a happy & relieved thumbs up. It took all I had to not cry -- both for joy and for sadness. It's a bittersweet moment, seeing your child go through these things. I sent an email to thank him for respecting her wishes, and two photos. As usual, I don't receive a "thank you". Doesn't really matter; I know I did the nice thing to send them. I also posted this on her school's community page on FB, "I want to send a big thank you to every teacher at Minter Bridge, but especially to M's teachers throughout her seven years there -- Mrs. Lewis (Kinder at the time), Ms. Kalish (no longer at MB), Mr. Strande, Mrs Mayers, Ms. Ellis, Ms Rodriguez, and Mr. Mayers. All of you have really helped shape who she is; have encouraged her to push herself, & have understood her needs both personal and educational. She is such a wonderful child, and I know part of that is due to her fabulous teachers. It really does "take a village", so thank you for being part of hers. :)" Princess' stepmother was among the 12 (currently) likes... interesting. It's been two days, and she's been a bit depressed. This should be a summer of discovery; for both of us. New nickname, new sport, new school.