Sometimes when I look at my daughter, standing over 4-1/2 feet tall, I have visions of her an infant. How did my little girl grow so tall? Where did her fabulous curls go? How did she develop into this fabulous tween? It feels like yesterday we brought her home from the hospital, and that was nearly nine years ago now. Where did time go?
As much as I enjoy each phase somehow even more than the last, as everything seems to be getting easier with every milestone, I sometimes want to stop the clocks. Of course, I have no desire to go back to changing diapers, going through potty training or weaning her off breastfeeding but there are many things I miss. I used to love taking her to pre-school and watch her interact with her teachers and friends. I even used to get a kick out of the fact that she would wear no color other than pink, nor that she wouldn’t wear pants for the longest stretch of time. She has always her own mind, and it’s been fascinating to watch it develop. I’ll never forget the way she used to smile at me when I collected her at pick-up, and the pride I felt in my heart at each end of year graduation and sing-along as each year of pre-school ended.
But she’s growing up, and it’s happening like a speeding bullet before my eyes. The influences of peers and media certainly doesn’t slow it down, and she went from hanging pictures of the Disney Princesses to pictures of Selena Gomez and Taylor Swift on every inch of her wall. While she is still lovable and angelic, she now exhibits moments of tween-like behavior when she can be quite disagreeable and sarcastic. She doesn’t want to make her bed or pick up the clothes off her floor, and not even mom can make her do it. Allowance won’t work, she tells me she has no need for money. I have to monitor her eating habits more closely without letting her know and that can be quite challenging, and then there’s the constant reminders to get her to practice piano and violin. The times they are changing.
Last night we went to see Disney on Ice at the Meadowlands. I wasn’t sure how she’d respond to a world she used to adore, but I felt that it was perhaps one last chance to see it. Next year she could easily refuse or not want to come. Fortunately, the show, called “Dare to Dream”, revolves around Rapunzel from Tangled, a film that we saw exactly a year ago and loved. It also revolves around the story from The Princess and the Frog and Cinderella, but I wasn’t as interested in their sections as much as Tangled. If you want to catch it, there are shows tomorrow at the Izod Center, Meadowlands Sports Complex, 50 State Rte 120. You can investigate tickets by calling (201) 507-8900 or disneyonice.com.
As long as I have my daughter’s devotion and attention, I’ll take it. I know that I’ll never lose her but I want to hang onto her youth and innocence for as long as I can.
Disclosure: The tickets to Disney on Ice were complimentary to facilitate this review.