Tuesday, October 21, 2008

A Letter To My Daybreak

Dear Daybreak,

I can't believe you'll be four years old on Friday. Should I let you read this when you're older, you'll be shocked to know your mom called me almost in tears about this fact the other night. This growing up thing you're doing? Yeah, that needs to stop ASAP. You so often act like a child far older that I forget you're not quite old enough for kindergarten yet.

You have all ready begun to master the art of sarcasm and the eye roll. You love talking on the phone. You channel a Mexican jumping bean whenever your mom takes you shopping. It's like a teenager in the body of a preschooler. Then you'll turn around tell me and your mom to please be quiet because Sesame Street is on and you can't miss it. Don't even get me started on someone talking during a commercial. It's like a capital crime to you.

Did you know I saw you a few days after you were born? Your mom stopped by the school with you and I even got to hold you for a few minutes. You were very small, not even as long as my forearm and I hadn't seen your gorgeous green eyes yet. I had no idea then that I would start to call you mine. I've only known you since late February and yet it scares me how much I love you.

There, I admit it.

You scared me.

I can see you as a teenager, reading this. You turn to me, bat your eyelashes, and say "you were scared of little ole me?"

Dear, I stand guilty as charged.

Since I've known you, your vocabulary has exploded. From the moment you found out I spoke Spanish, you made me your Dora buddy. You would flit around the house and point to random things, say their Spanish name, then look to me for confirmation. You are always looking for something to learn. Eva says it isn't surprising since your favourite word has always been 'why'.

"Why is the ground down and the sky up?"

"Why can't we live in the water like my goldfish?"

"Why are you (me) so much darker than Mommy?"

When me and Eva were still just friends and even when we first started dating, I didn't want you to get too attached to me. I didn't want you to be heartbroken if things didn't work out between us. I don't know how to put into words just how much it hurt to see you burst into tears during that conversation.

You melt my little black heart (no pun intended) on a regular basis with the comments that come out of your mouth. Such as you telling every person in Ben & Jerry's they could eat poo if they didn't like me and Eva dating each other. Or your passionate stance that no one should be alone on the holidays, not even scarecrows.

With every day me and you spend together, Eva has to ask if you are becoming my daughter by osmosis. When you and your mom came over for dinner the other night, you told me you were ready to go through the haunted lab. I asked if you were sure you wanted to. You gave me a look that clearly said YES, DID I STUTTER? so I let it go. I'm pretty much sure you'll be scared out of your mind but I call this learning the hard way.

You now try and read anything you can get your little hands on. I have never laughed so hard in a grocery store before in my life as when I heard you ask loudly MOMMY, WHAT'S A RUBBER? DO GROWN-UPS HAVE TUB TOYS TOO?! Come to think of it, I've never rushed out (against my will) of one so fast either. Yet you still prefer to sit in either me or Eva's lap and have us read to you. Whatever takes the least amount of energy right? After all, driving your mom nuts is a full-time job even between the two of us.

I've never met a child quite like you. You will jump from the top of a slide without hesitation. I thought me and Eva were about to have a heart attack. You dusted your hands on your jeans, gave us a crooked grin, and said you just wanted to see if the ground would catch you. Issac Newton has nothing on this kid.

Then on the nights I'm there when it's your bedtime, you'll ask me to check under your bed and in your closet. For monsters, you say. But unlike most children, you're not afraid of them. You want them to crawl into bed with you so they can be comfortable. You looked dead at me and said, everyone needs someone to love them. Even monsters. You explained that they're like you when you haven't had a good nap. Cranky and mean. Some sleep would make them feel better.

You're finally getting over your phobia of milk or booger juice as you call it. Yeah, my bad. I have to admit though that seeing you flee at the very sight of a cow is hilarious and completely worth the smack to the head. I've even started baking cookies from scratch since you love doing it so much. Although you did cry when I made fun of you for getting the flour everywhere. I even felt horrible. That is until you threw some IN MY FACE. Yeah, that's my girl.

By the way, I will never forget you pointing to Sarah Palin on television and asking 'why is this lady on TV instead of Wal-Mart?'

For the past three weeks, all you have been able to talk about is your birthday bash on Saturday. Especially when you found out your Aunt I and Aunt G were coming home from New York to be there. You've talked my ear off at length on what dress you plan to wear, and how cool the cake your mom let you pick out is going to be. You have what games you want to play planned out beside your bed. Twice now you've actually talked yourself to sleep. Congratulations on surpassing me in the motormouth department.

Sadly, I was unable to figure out just how to get Big Bird to your party.

Maybe next year.

I have to smile watching you drive your pink Barbie convertible with your sunglasses on. You throw your head back and laugh at the freedom you have as you zoom across your Grandma's backyard. But as you race towards the sunset, my smile is a bit sad.

One day you'll do that for real.

At age four, you think all boys but me, your uncles, and your new cousin are icky. You think make-up is just for playtime with your mom. And you still think skittles are a zillion times more valuable than a dollar bill. Will you stay this child forever? No, you thought Peter Pan was silly for not wanting to grow up. You'll grow into an amazing woman who I look forward to getting to know.

But for now?

You're still the kid who snuggles between me and Eva for story time and one who I'm equally proud of and fascinated by.

So happy birthday Daybreak, I love you. Yes even the time when I tricked you into trying broccoli.



  1. I know how lucky you are to have her in your life, but do you have any idea how lucky she is to have you? I hope with all my heart to meet someone who will love my child the way you love Daybreak.

    PS... thanks for making me cry... again. Geez.

  2. I just read your 'poo' posting... good lord, man (sniff sniff). If you get a chance, go to my blog and look up my 'Brown, It's Just a Color' post from July 30th. You'll appreciate it, I think :).

  3. that's a really beautiful post. Very beautiful and when your kid is in their 20's you shoudl definitely allow them to read these. It gives them an appreciation of where they come from, I think.

  4. So beautiful, so well written, and I'm certain when she's older she'll definitely appreciate it.


    Take it from me ... sometimes those dads who aren't blood related turn out a bazillion times better simply because they don't HAVE TO care or love; they just do.

  5. Wow, I agree, such a beautifully written letter.

    She is so lucky to have someone like you in her life!

  6. I am so scared of kids in a good way, that they would get under my skin and everything would turn inside-out

  7. You have no idea how much she will cherish these words in the years to come. To know she was so loved by someone. To be thought of as yours. After my parents got divorced (I was 5) my mom dated some guys who could have cared less about me. But then she met the man who became my step-dad. Only he has NEVER referred to me as a "Step" daughter. He says that word implies a lesser love. He has always treated me as his own and I could never make him understand how much that means to me.
    Great job on being wonderful :)

  8. You told me about this letter but I am only now getting a chance to read it. I'm sitting in the office right now crying. Daybreak absolutely adores you (so do I) and though I knew you loved her, you put it "on paper" beautifully. I wish you were here right now so I could hug the stuffing out of you but I can wait until I see you tonight.

    I love you, you have no idea how much right now.

  9. Diane - Is it bad that I see her as getting the short end of the stick? As for me making you cry, you returned the favour today so we're even.

    Kat - I'd probably let her read this in her teens. Just so she can see how crazy her Papa is and how silly she was as a child.

    Mindy - I hope she does. I grew up with a dad who didn't care so I can certainly understand that.

    MBandit - That is pretty much what happened between March and May.

    Heather - Should me and Eva get married, I don't think I could call her my step anything. I've all ready called her my daughter out loud several times.

    Eva - I look forward to that hug Hon. I love you too.

  10. Wow, that little Ms. Daybreak is incredibly blessed to have you.

    It was the comment from Eva that just put me over the edge, I've got to get a tissue. You are such a beautiful family, an inspiration.


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