Today, Hannah Ruth, you are turning seven.
I can hardly believe it. In three more short years, we’ll be making jokes about double digits and writing 10 instead of spelling out the word. You don’t want to think about that though - getting older seems to scare you a bit. I talk about great experiences still to come - overnight camp, high school, driving cars - and you’re not all that eager. But then you talk about being a fashion designer and living on your own in New York City, and it’s so far off that it excites you, but it will all happen too quickly for me.
You’ve grown up so much this year. You’re a huge help with your little brother, though sometimes I have to remind you that you’re not his parent. You told me it was okay when I cried in pain. You got your first pet, your fish Ocean, bringing him home from a family wedding. You started having homework, and do it so capably and responsibly, which I hope will continue throughout your life. Your have become a very competent reader, noticing words you never bothered to acknowledge before and reading them triumphantly. You’ve dealt with a schoolmate who wasn’t treating you kindly in a really wonderful way, so that now you’re getting along much better. You have many friends, and adults adore you.
You saw The Lion King, Wicked, and The Nutcracker (twice). You skied for the first time. You went to more play dates and birthday parties than I can count. You gave your phone number to a boy, but didn’t mind when he didn’t call. You pierced your ears and didn’t flinch. You were a star and a duchess. You had fun swimming in the ocean, even if it took me hours to get you out there. You use Grandma Susan’s “bed” trick faithfully. You’re proud to be good at math, and happy to see “Tron: Legacy” with Dad (thanks for getting me out of that one, kid!). You make up songs with me at the bus stop, and laugh when we come up with really good rhymes. You love to draw and swim and go to museums. Your brother is your very best friend.
I hope that as you grow you’ll always feel comfortable talking to me about anything, as I know the challenges will only get harder. But I also hope that you can see yourself the way others do: as a very competent and kind girl. I can’t wait to finish furnishing your new bedroom with you, to throw your sleep “under” party, to see you in your new black karate outfit, and to experience many more big and small moments together.