Thursday, September 19, 2019

Thanks, girl :)

Lately, Neva is my biggest fan. Which is nice, because I can really use the love right now. She often impulsively hugs me, rough and tough as always, and says to me, “You’re just the best girl in the world.”

Also: “I just love you the best.”

She’s full of strong affections:
“This is the best day EVER!”
“I LOVE Auntie Erin. She’s SO beautiful.”
(Hearing me absentmindedly humming “O Christmas Tree”): “I LOVE that song.”

When she was a baby, I wrote her a song. Between then and now, I nearly forgot it, but this summer, I scraped it out of my memory (to her utter delight) and now sing it to her every night. “Can you sing ‘Neva-Mae-where-we-say-goodbye’?” And when I’m finished, every time, she sighs. “I LOVE that song.”

Hello, little Neva Mae
Oh I hope you had a wonderful day
And I hope you never feel alone
Mama’s home with you, Neva Mae

Neva Mae, Neva Mae
Oh, what a day
When I saw you for the very first time
Oh, you cried, and you cried, 
But then peacefully lay
In my arms
My little Neva Mae

Hello, you spunky little girl
Oh, I know you’re gonna light up the world
But even sunny girls like you encounter rain
And when there’s pain, 
I’ll be there, Neva Mae

Neva Mae, Neva Mae
Oh, what a day
When your heart breaks for the very first time-
Oh you’ll cry- we’ll both cry-
But then Mama’s gonna say,
“You are strong and you are perfect,
Neva Mae”

Hello, you dear and mighty girl
Why don’t you go and take on the world?
But no matter how far away you roam,
You have a home with me,
Neva Mae

Neva Mae, Neva Mae
Oh, what a day
When we say goodbye for the very first time
Oh, I’ll cry and I’ll cry,
But you’ll smile and you’ll say,
“I’ll always be your Neva Mae”

Yes, you’ll always be my Neva Mae

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

You are enough.

This is what I would say to my child, if he or she felt desperately alone or unwanted:

(I have four children; undoubtedly at least one will inherit my fear of falling short.)

You are good enough, just the way you are. You are enough.
If you never progress in any area for the rest of your life, I still love having you in my life.
Even if you believe you are failing harder than ever, you’re not.
(But even if you were, I wouldn’t care.)
I can’t imagine loving anyone as much as I love you.
I wouldn’t trade you for anyone else in the world.
Even if you feel like all you are is “a thousand problems,” I take them in a heartbeat, because I am crazy about you.
Don’t turn away from the ones who love you most, believing you’ll never be enough for them.
I expect nothing from you. The things I try to teach you- they are just lessons. Not expectations.
You might think everyone would be happier without you. That’s an absolute lie.
I would be devastated to lose you. I’m not sure I would recover.
You, with your quirks and failures and flaws, and all your fears- you are perfect just the way you are.
There’s nothing to “measure up” to- the standard is nonexistent; you “measured up” the moment you were born, and you’ve never fallen short since then.
You are perfect just the way you are, and I love you more than you know. 

Hmmmm. I believe I will start telling them these things now.
Who wouldn’t want to hear, you are perfect the way you are?