On Your Last Day of Second Grade

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Dearest Frog Princess: We are staring your last day of 2nd grade straight in the face! I have so many things I want to tell you. I don't even know where to begin.

Tonight, as you were getting ready for bed and doing the usual "meaning of life" chit chat, we got into friendships, saying sorry and accepting apologies (or not).

Every day I am surprised by your ability to read certain situations. Specifically around human interactions. I'm glad that we have these chats. Glad that we can sit and talk about any and everything.

You end your year at 4'5" tall. The other day, as you were drying off after a shower you exclaimed "when did I get this big?!" and we both giggled. Thank you for filling my heart with pride and joy.

I have learned so much from you this year.

First day vs. last day

Like how the smallest things bring you happiness, that when someone says they're sorry, something builds up in your chest and it makes you feel bad that they are saying it (oh baby, that's empathy!). And recently during a conversation that devolved into deep sobs, you shared how the reason why you still like your lovies (the burp clothes from when you were a baby) is because they were once held by your abuela and that's a piece of her that you carry with you. It was magical to watch you say that and be surprised by it, even stating that you hadn't thought of it that way before. I love how your brain works.

That just broke me in new ways. I tend to forget that you have your own grief over the loss of Mami even though you were so young.

You have been on A/B honor roll the entire year in spite of having 50% of your classes and tests in Spanish. I'm super grateful to your teachers and proud of the work that you put in every single day. You think multiplication and division are easier than everyone said and, while we are still building that confidence in reading, you thoroughly enjoy the books you get into. I'm handing you Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets next week as we've made a pact that you're going to level up and not let your fears stop you from going to the next adventure.

You still love to snuggle and on days when I am tied to my devices working late and our time is limited, your fave thing is to "play catch" or "play balloon" on the bed before it's time to sleep.

Yes, you still ask if you can sleep in my bed and yes, we negotiate terms. You've been sick since Friday and are snuggled up in my bed as I type this. One of my favorite things is when you throw your arm around me first thing in the morning and whisper "I love you". If I counted the times we said this to one another every day, I'd run out of fingers, planets and Avengers before I got to the right number.

Thank you for indulging me. For being excited about Black Panther and A Wrinkle In Time. For reminding me that we still have 2 more books in the quintet (we listen to these books on audible and it's beyond magical). Thank you for listening to my monologues on your worth, self-esteem, spirit, grief, alcohol, grades, books and the other millions of topics that we discuss throughout our days.

Last night, after hearing me speak with your father about a reaction to the meds you were taking, we went to the pharmacy and I asked you what was wrong. You clearly stated that you wanted to know what was going on. Thank you for remembering to use your voice and to ask when you don't know or don't understand. We might not always be able to give you a response but, I can promise to always listen.

When we got back home, you came to sit next to me and hugged me, apologizing for having gotten sick on Memorial Day weekend and needing extra care. I held you and told you that you never had to say sorry for things like that. I also said it was my greatest pleasure to care for you and be your Mami. And, I meant it. Then you mirrored my response and said it was your greatest pleasure to be my kid. You manage to melt my heart more regularly than you think.

We have selected a theme for summer and I cannot wait to kick off the Summer of Adventure with you. Here's to finding new roads to travel, creating new memories and being present.

I love you. From here to the sun and back, at least the stone and ice age combined,

Mami