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Lovely eleven (updated with photo)

My firstborn is eleven today.

Aidan is at the age where she wants to carry a purse to the mall, but inside is a soft stuffed bunny finger puppet along with her money and some Chapstick.

I hope she carries the bunny for a few more years. I know that won’t happen. One day she’ll take it out of her purse with a slight eye-roll and nudge it under her bed.

She is caught between the dazzling allure of the teen ages and the security of childhood. I see it every day as she delights one moment in playing with her little horses but in the next she’s slamming her bedroom door in a fit of emotions that are still too big for her to wrangle.

I am sentimental about the past and slightly fearful about the coming years with our first teenager. I’m caught, too.

Here at eleven, my daughter and I are aligned in an orbit. I’m bigger, but she’s moving faster and faster. Soon, I’ll watch her launch ahead and away, never taking my eyes off her path.


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