Julia is three today.
Last night, as I was settling her into bed I said, “This is the last day you are two. Julia, you will never be two years old again.” She was thrilled by this idea. I was choking up. All I could think about was how Two was supposed to be terrible. Those Terrible Twos. But, I couldn’t think of anything terrible about Julia being two. I loved Julia at two.
This morning, I woke her up with a birthday song accompanied by tickles and kisses, then pulled out a group of pictures only our immediate family has seen to retell the story of the day she was born. Her favorite is of her Daddy holding her for the first time. Every time we look at it I say, “Your Daddy was the first person ever in this world to hold you.” Today, she knew what came next in the story and added that I held her second. “Yes,” I said, “I held you second. And the first thing you did was drink milk!” We looked at pictures and talked about how she had grown and how great being three was going to be. Then, we tucked the pictures away, closed the door on Two and went downstairs to eat some Amish Friendship bread.
She sat next to me at the dining room table, eating her bread, drinking her milk and swinging her dangling legs that don’t quite hit the floor. Not yet. She was talking about her birthday cake and the party we have planned for next weekend. She seemed so big. The past three years felt more like days and at the same time, my life before her felt so far away, like something I’d read in a book or watched on television, rather than a piece of life I’ve lived. It occurred to me that I view my life in relation to her – things either happened before Julia or after Julia. Then, I thought of this quote:
- Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh
Today, I am filled with gratitude for my girl who gave me life just as much as I gave it to her.
*In My Life by The Beatles