I don’t know if you remember my apple picking debacle last fall–the one in which I blithely forgot that most important first date of my oldest daughter.
I finally got my hands on a photo disk from that evening and found out who was driving that car:
He’s the kid in the black shirt and the pale grey tie. This was my daughter’s homecoming group. (Homecoming, right? That’s the big dance ya’ll have in the fall down here?) If I remember right they made an appearance at the dance, and then went out into the middle of a cornfield and watched a movie about… aliens… landing in a cornfield… Or maybe that was some other dance, with some other group of kids. There are a lot of them her age. We are blessed to live in a town with so many youth who support each other in making good choices. She’s the one that’s still taller than almost every other girl there, even though she’s wearing flats:
Meg is my oldest. When we brought her home from the hospital, she didn’t have a middle name. One day my husband suggested “Adeth” and everyone else in the room cracked up. I didn’t get the joke. Then again, I’m not sure I’d ever heard of that group. (Meg-adeth? You follow?) Meg has the same quirky sense of humor her father had, and also his height, mathematical ability, and really good teeth.
She’s also my artist. I was going to hunt down one of her paintings and take a picture today, but the college has a ridiculous number of hallways, and I couldn’t remember where she said it was hanging. Honestly, my favorite pieces are the pictures she does in church–while she’s sitting there doodling. She has an incredible sense of perspective, color, pattern and balance.
I know, I’m her mother and I’m supposed to think that, but she really does. Wait, I’m going to go look through my church bag, I might have something….
Nope. Nothing. Which is weird, cause I thought I had several. Maybe next time round I’ll have some.
Meg’s always been quick. I remember the first time she uttered a sentence: she was halfway up Grandma’s stairs, and I was following along behind to be sure she wouldn’t forget what she was doing and take a tumble. She paused, looked back over her shoulder and blithely strung together a proper sentence. I was so stunned–that this little critter could speak. By the time she was old enough to register for Kindergarten she was already head and shoulders taller than her peers and reading chapter books. I called the school and they kind of brushed me off as an ambitious parent. They said I could take her in and have her tested if I wanted, but their policy was to always start children in the correct class for their age.
I took her in to visit the Kindergarten teacher. The principal happened to be there and handed her a book–which she read fluently. The kindergarten teacher sort of raised her eyebrows and gave him a look like, Seriously? You want me to have this child in my classroom? And he gave us permission, right there, to move her up into Mrs. Buckley’s classroom for the next fall. Bobbie Buckley–I loved that woman. She retired not long after teaching Meg. (No connection, I’m sure…)
Now she’s sixteen, doing Running Start, driving her own car, and making pretty good choices for herself. It is so strange to watch your daughter morph overnight from tweenish to nearly adult form. To realize that there are things they know more about than you do, and to be able to ask their advice about some of those things. She’ll graduate from high school and college at the same time, when she is seventeen years old, and she’s already making bigger plans and she’s more than capable of accomplishing anything she sets her mind to.
Seems like just a few months ago she was chattering about Elmo’s World and falling off of furniture. I have proof of that, by the way–the falling off of furniture part:
(Weird picture, I know. I found it on my hard drive the other day. I like the colors.) See that dimple? She wasn’t born with that, believe it or not; that’s some kind of internal scar from slamming her face into the leg of a rocking chair, if I remember right. It swelled up something crazy, and when it went away, the dimple remained. But it suits her, n’est-ce pas?
I have no idea where the French just came from. The other alternative was “eh?” which I backed my cursor up over instantly. Apparently when I’m tired, I revert to my childhood.
Someone needs to go to bed.
Did I mention that she’s got her own car?
Which means that now, she is never, ever home. I wait up until I hear the tell-tale growl of the engine, and the tinny slam of the door and then I’m asleep before she walks in the door. I know, I’m supposed to stay up and have heart to heart chats about her evening. You do what you can. I probably trust her way too much, but God knew I’d need one I could trust to start out the teenage years. Cause you know the rest of them are coming, and coming fast…