You are one of the most beautiful things I have ever seen, especially when you are sleeping. I'm not lying when I tell you that I could sit and watch you sleep for hours; studying your features, hoping to sear the image of the eyelashes sweeping the tops of those chubby cheeks and pouty lips into my memory. When you are sleeping, I catch myself unknowingly kissing your temple, inhaling your soft baby scent. You have a vein the runs along your right temple and every time I look at it, I think "I made that -- my body made that."
As you dream sweet dreams of sugar, spice, & everything nice, I have dreams for you as your Mama. I hope that you grow into someone who appreciates the little things in life -- the way that it smells after it rains, the taste of the first cherries of summer, the sounds of melodies that bring back sweet memories, the feel of the soft fur on the ears of your best friend whose tail wags violently whenever he sees you. Most of my dreams for you are those that I'm sure every Mother wishes for their child. When I started thinking about those individual dreams, one theme kept recurring... I'm the one that is going to make those dreams come true. I'm the one that is going to teach you right from wrong. I'm going to be the one that gives you the self-confidence to love yourself. I'm the one that's going to be there to help make you a stronger, more independent woman through those break-ups that are bound to happen (and I'm going to be utterly confused by those boys that break your heart because I can't understand someone who can't love the beautifulness that is you). So instead of having dreams for you as your Mama, I have dreams for myself as your Mama.
I hope that I remember to make the most of the little moments and don't get too caught up in the shuffle of life. Some of the best memories are made on the ordinary days where you are simply present. And I hope that I am living in the moment as often as possible. I hope that I can leave my work day at the door when I get home. In the grand scheme of life, work isn't important, but you are.
I hope that I make the ordinary special. It is so easy to get into a routine and not realize that months have passed in the blink of an eye. I hope to have picnics at the lake for dinner instead of sitting around the dinner table. I hope to sit outside on a blanket with little tea candles lit while you run around the yard chasing fireflies. I hope we wear the good dresses to go out grocery shopping just because we want to feel fancy. I hope to take moonlight walks during the hot summer months with Sinatra belting out the lyrics to Moon River. I hope we wake up early on the weekends (sometimes) to feel the dew in between our toes.
I hope that I don't give you everything. I know my natural tendency is to give you the world. Of course, I will make sure that you have absolutely everything that is essential, but you don't need every superfluous thing that your heart desires. It will make you more grateful for what you do have. When the time comes that you turn 16, I hope I remember the feeling I had when I got my first job and started earning my own money. I want you to have the same feeling. Nothing great comes without hard work.
Speaking of gratitude, I hope that I remember every day to be grateful for all that I have in my life, especially you. Things may not be going exactly the way that I had envisioned them, but I hope I can step back and look at all the beautiful things that are present and truly be grateful for them.
I hope that I am able to attend every parent-teacher conference, every class party, every Halloween parade, every dance/cheedleading event or sport event. My parents NEVER missed a function for me. Even when I was a cheerleader, they attended EVERY game, even the away games. And at the time, I used to get upset because I couldn't ride the bus home as I would leave the games with my parents. But looking back, I'm glad that they were at every single game. I know they cared and supported me. They truly were my biggest fans. I want that for you.
I hope that we dance all the fricking time! I hope that we open the windows and turn up the stereo and dance barefoot in the grass with our skirts twirling in the fading sunlight. I hope we dance in the kitchen while we are cooking dinner with our pretend microphones, singing at the top of our lungs. I hope we dance in the middle of a store if the overhead speakers start playing a tune that makes you want to scream "I just gotta dance!" (That, my dear, has already happened and Mommy got quite some looks, mostly from your daddy.)
Most importantly, I hope that I do right by you. I hope that you look back on your childhood and want to be the type of mother that I was to you -- that will be my biggest testament that I did the absolute best that I could.