I meant to write you while I was pregnant, but I was too busy talking to my belly and sleeping a lot. I meant to write you while you were a newborn, but I was too busy realizing I was in over my head and not sleeping much at all. I meant to write you on your 6 month birthday, but got distracted playing airplane with you. I meant to write you on your first birthday, but things were too nuts with your Daddoo's PhD and your birthday party.
So, I figure--heck, why not? I'll write you on your 12 month, 2 week, 5 day birthday. I did manage to peg the time, anyway. 9:41 pm--not something I'll ever forget, although the hours following sure were a blur!
So what do I want to say to my sweet daughter who is so adorable that you give me an ice cream headache of cuteness? My thoughts drift to your (long) upcoming teenage years... blergh. I have high hopes that we will have a good relationship, but I realize there are times you won't like your parents (and me especially!) very much. You'll be fairly sure that we're idiots and are only out to ruin your fun. When that happens, I hope a part of your hormone-riddled brain can process some important things:
1. We do love you, but we are idiots. It's true. You thought I was going to say that we're not idiots? It's only God's grace that helps us to parent you. However, we are less of idiots than you are, since we've seen more of life and made more mistakes. So we get to be in charge. Sorry. If you really can't stand us, maybe there's some other nice family out there who will take you in until you're 18?
2. Sarcasm can indeed be a love language. It's also a coping mechanism. It can also be a bit much... and it's a fine line between funny and harsh. Sorry. If you really can't stand the lovingly sarcastic environment, may I suggest that you watch an episode of "Leave It to Beaver?"
3. About us being out to ruin your fun--actually, we are. It's payback for the sleepless nights, the poo-splosions, no longer having a life, the drain on our finances and the unholy amount of soggy Cheerios I've had to pick up off the floor. Sorry. If it really makes you mad, hold out for when we get old and you can get your own payback by putting us in a low-rent nursing home.
4. For all that we can be no-fun, lame duck parents, I hope you've had some fun over the years. I see these years, where a funny face is all that it takes to crack you up, slipping away all-too-quickly and am both afraid and looking forward to the challenge of finding new ways to make you smile (after I've made you cry with my responsible disciplinary measures). I know we've said "no" a lot--perhaps more than we've said "yes." Sorry. If you can just hold on, soon you'll be all grown up and we can all have fun again squabbling over how you never call and we send noisy toys to the grandkids.
Hang on a second--there's sarcasm dripping down the computer screen and I need to clean it up. I'll be right back.
Okay, sweet Annabel--borgleboo, child of mine, preciousness, monkeybuns (and all the other ridiculous things I call you)--as it says in your Sandra Boynton book:
I love you and love you.
And love you and love you.
And love you and love you.
No matter how sarcastic I get, how hectic life is, or how aggravated you are with me, never doubt that.