Sunday, February 05, 2006

My daughter's birthday.

Last friday my daughter's birthday. She completed 9 years. She had been preparing for this day for a long time. She bought the dress that she wanted to wear and the accessories a couple of months back. She searched and got a particular shade of silver gray nail polish. She is getting fussier about her clothes as she is getting older. She planned the menu for her lunch to school (which she wanted to share with her close friends), the type of candy that she is going to take to school to distribute to her classmates and teachers. On the eve of her birthday, she was dancing around singing 'Tomorrow is my birthday! Tomorrow is my birthday. Aren't you excited too?' I hugged her and kissed her and said yes. And I laughed with happiness and sadness too.

I am happy and grateful for the experience of motherhood. I am happy and proud for the caring person she is turning out to be. I am sad that she is growing up so fast. She already knows what she wants and what she doesn't. She knows her mind. And she thinks she knows best. I am sometimes amazed by her confidence. Though I get irritated sometimes, I also think it is a good thing that she knows what she wants and then she sticks to it. Sometimes she realizes only later that she was wrong. It is only part of growing up. The way it happened with her new shoes.

Like all the children, she is in a hurry to grow up, at least to look grownup. She had been pestering me to buy her high heeled shoes that many of her friends wear. I had refused many times. I myself do not use high heels. Last weekend, when she visited Bangalore with her father, he gave in and bought what she wanted. She practiced walking in them in the house for a couple of days.

Yesterday, she wore her new shoes to school along with her new dress. She doesn't need to wear a uniform to school on her birthday. She is tall for her age and she looked lovely in her black skirt with a pretty white top with matching bracelet, dangling earrings and a cute necklace, her silver-gray nail polish and of course her black, shiny high heeled shoes.

I cautioned her to be careful while getting on and off the school bus, moving around in school. She had a wonderful day at school where her dress was admired by her friends. She got down from the school bus and while walking a few steps towards the house, she tripped and fell. She had a very bad bruise on her knee. Then she hurt herself in the same place which was healing after a fall she had about 10 days back while playing.

I held her tight, when she was howling with pain. I was wishing that I could take the pain away, though I knew that it is not possible. I had to accept that it is impossible for us to control the events in anybody's life. Not our own , nor our children's. At this moment, I can only enjoy my daughter's growing up, the joys of nurturing and experience the pain of letting go and not worry about what will happen in future.

I know, I too am growing up with my daughter. I am growing mature, at last.


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