12 Years Old

Dear Gwen, 

You turn 12 today, and I continue to feel like the luckiest to be your Mom and walk this path with you. Your love is so encompassing and so deep. That said, wow is puberty a wild ride for all. Ha! You continue to grow and mature so much, and are just the sweetest soul... but you find yourself torn now, emotions running in directions outside of your control. You rage against the (very universal) battle of wants vs needs, and expectations - both your own and other peoples. 

This is year one of Middle School, and so far you are killing it. All As for the first two quarters, which is absolutely amazing. You're working so hard to balance fun things with classes, friends, Girl Scouts, family time, skiing, etc. Not to mention all the things keeping your dad and I busy, and alternating our time away from you. There's a lot going on here in the middle of this pandemic world! But you know what, you're taking it all in stride. Despite the trials that your anxiety and depression bring, you still are pretty damn great at going with the flow.

I'm trying to remember everything I can from this year, and I'm regretting how much I didn't write. I loved 11 in so many ways. You're amazing to talk to, open with your struggles, not embarrassed to to hash out the hard things... I hope that stays! There is so much as you leave the pre-teen years and enter teenager times that gets hard and challenging, and I just want you to know that you can always, always talk to me about it.

You still love reading with a passion, ripping though books in days; you draw and sketch regularly (especially to illustrate stories you have floating around your head, D&D adventures, or animals); and you love music, both listening to and playing. You're getting pretty good at the drums, and really like your music teacher.

You've continued to horseback ride whenever we give you a chance, and love to be outside in general. Skiing with your dad, camping and hiking with me. You're still an A+ traveler, and we have some big plans for this summer! You also regularly go on walks with your Aunts, which I'm just so grateful is part of our daily life now.

You're fun, and funny; a trickster who likes to surprise your dad and I whenever you can (see picture above of you hiding in a pile of stuffed animals); but a hard worker too. You're not afraid of work, especially if you have a goal in mind. Your Girl Scout troop has a summer goal of a NYC trip, and so you have been putting the work in on crafts and selling cookies. That dedication came in handy for earning your Girl Scout Bronze Award too!

You still love Legos, and do a lot of creating of things/places that you created in your own head. You build rooms and buildings and whole landscapes sometimes. You still love Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, Star Wars, as well as the Simpsons and the Mandalorian (and all related shows/movies). You've fallen down a YouTube rabbit hole these past few months and love looking up videos of random things: singing shows, people playing mindcraft, kids making slime, cooking challenges, etc. I'm okay with this new obsession since we established some time limits, and since you are so good about talking to me. You know if you encounter something that you think is off or inappropriate, to always bring it to me to talk about.

I wish I could better capture who you are right now, the essence of you. How I still have a few inches on you, but your big personality make it feel like you're going to overtake me any second. Your long limbs, long hair, feet only around a size smaller then mine. Your ready smile, and contagious laugh.

You've started asking for yoga before bed, and you're more interested then ever before in purposeful movement to stretch out, and get stronger. You're also starting to understand the joy of a lie in on lazy mornings, and have no qualms about letting us know you're ready for bed early on long, tiring days.

Gwen, while 12 seems so old, grown up, and mature in some ways (and I'm quite proud of your maturity), I'm so glad to see you're not in a rush to be more adult. Those things will come sooner then either of us like... and I hope no matter how old you get, you never lose the magic, never stop believing in the mythical, and are never afraid to love what you love, no matter what anyone else thinks.

I love you times infinity, you're the best Gwenie in the Multiverse...



No comments:

Post a Comment

Leave me some love!
~ Meegs