To Priscilla on her Third Birthday

Dear Priscilla,

Yesterday you turned three. Three. You keep telling me that you are a little girl, and I am glad. I need you to be little for a little while longer too. But I can tell you are getting older, we’ve been using your nickname less and less. (Though, I doubt you will ever fully outgrow it.)

I’m afraid you have inherented my big feelings. You just feel everything so deeply. Your joy, your sadness, it all comes to you fully . Sometimes, when I watch you navigate life my heart breaks a little bit. I know your struggles. I know what it is like to want something simple like your sister to sing happy birthday to you, or to wear a certain t-shirt and for it to matter deeply. I know what it is like to have your heart set on something a certain way you can’t communicate it without crying pre-emptively. I promise I know.

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I hope you learn the lesson that it took me so long to learn, the people that love you care about your desires. If something is really important to you, it is important to them to. It doesn’t always mean they can do it, it doesn’t always mean it will happen, but you don’t have to feel bad that you want things. You are so deeply loved. So loved.

I was very careful this year to only invite “your people.” You are picky about people, and I haven’t quite figured out how you pick, but the people you pick are solid. And they love you so much. You are so loved. In May you made your grandma and papaw promise to come to your birthday, and they came. They love you and they knew it was important. Every single present you were given was hand picked. Things you love, in the colors you love, in the size you love. These people know you and love you. Hold on to that. It is a gift to be loved so well.

You bring change love, and you know yourself well. You woke up on your third birthday not ready to be three. So you told us. You told us it was not your birthday; you told us you were still two. And later, you were ready, and you announced it was your birthday and you were now three. I love that about you. You don’t let anyone tell you what to do, not even me, especially me, and it is tricky to parent, but I know that it is on purpose. God gave you your fierceness for a reason, and I am glad you have it, even if it is hard to parent.

This year, your sister left for school. and I was totally sure that given the space, you would become our one tiny introvert. Ha! Jokes on me, again. You have come bursting out of whatever thin shell you had. Your taste is so specific. You know exactly what you like and what you don’t. And you are so funny. So witty, a straight talker even for a three year old. I’m just so proud of you. You are YOU, and we need all of you. The world needs all of you, and I’m so glad

All my love,

Mom

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