My girl is perfect. Right now she is still very much a little girl, but with some more grown up qualities coming through that are so endearing they melt my heart. I just want to bottle up the way she is now and keep her like this forever.
The little girl smiles with delight every time she sees me or Daddy. She likes to be picked up and cuddled. Her idea of heaven is to be cuddled up to both of us. She would stay like that forever, she would never want to move. The little girl holds my hand everywhere we go. She never lets go and I love it. She’s 7, going on 8, and sadly many kids of her age would have already decided it’s not cool. But she holds my hand because she loves me and because she does things properly and never breaks any rules (even though I don’t impose this rule on her, she just sees it as the right thing to do, and who am I to complain?). If I’m not around, she will hold my mum’s hand in the same way.
The little girl can get nervous and anxious. She is afraid of the dark and gets panicky and stressed when she has a cold, feeling like she can’t breathe. I do my best to calm her down and to avoid the things that stress her and make sure others do too. Maybe I’m wrong to do this, maybe I’m spoiling her a bit because she’s my ‘baby’, maybe she needs to just deal with it.
But my grown up girl is organised and helpful. If I need help with anything, I tend to ask her rather than the boys. I don’t think I’m being sexist, she is just genuinely more helpful than them and seems to know what’s going on with the whole family so much better than them.
My grown up girl takes life seriously, but also squeezes every ounce of pleasure out of it that she can. She is a chatterbox and will talk in great detail about the things that matter to her – whether it’s hairstyles and TV talent shows or school, dance class or somewhere she has visited.
She’s in the school choir and they recently went to a restaurant to sing to diners at lunchtime. She savoured every second of that experience. When we drive past, as we often do, she points it out excitedly. Then shows me the entrance they went in, where the other entrances lead to, where they crossed the road, which teacher helped them cross the road… It is this enthusiasm for the small things in life that I adore and wish we could hold on to forever.
My big girl has recently got some new, big , trendy glasses. I was sceptical about them at first. I thought they would be too big for her little face, but they suit her better than any glasses she’s had before. And just as her very first glasses brought about a change in personality, so these glasses have given her character. She is forever pulling funny faces and striking hip hop poses. The fun glasses have brought fun to my girl.
My big girl has started washing her own hair and doing her own hair for school. Although the last minute demand to ‘do my hair’ before school was sometimes annoying, I miss it now I’m not needed. And I miss the fun we used to have when I washed her hair. These things are signs she’s growing up and I want to slow it down.
She’s heading for the tween years – for stroppy and feisty. She won’t want to cuddle me and hold my hand like she does. That’s why I want to bottle her exactly as she is right now and keep my lovely little girl just a bit longer.