Letter to my boy on the eve of turning 7
Tonight is your last night being 6 years old. As I tucked you into bed, you said, "I'm going to miss being 6. I like being 6."
I'm going to miss it, too. Hovering between the playful, silly whimsical child and the thoughtful, introspective, social boy you will become, I want to slow down this time, keep you at this stage a little bit longer.
7 feels so... grown up.
Sure, you play video games, but you still play with your toy soldiers, too. You stage D-Day battles in our backyard: the German soldiers set up on the stairs, the Allied troops coming in on the boats in the cold, choppy waters of our kiddie pool.
Yes, you pick your school outfits with care, but last night you and your brother dressed up in your Revolutionary War costumes to go to the park, where you ran through the bushes like a couple of rebels, without a care in the world.
You still like to read "The Hungry Caterpillar."
And you still love the song from the movie "Heffalump," the one where Kanga sings, "Little Mister Roo, reaching for the moon, don't grow up too fast, too soon..."
Only difference is, now you understand the meaning of the song, and when you ask me to sing it, it's just that much more poignant.
I admit, I'm often complaining that the days go by slowly - in fact, a lot of days feel like Groundhog Day - but the years? They fly by.
My prayer for you this year is that you will retain that child within, that enthusiasm, that curiosity, and that innocence. And I pray for me that I can remember, every once in a while, to stop and enjoy you as you are in that very moment, and embed that memory of your sweet childhood in my heart, as only a parent can.