Ten.

Ten years ago we became parents. She was beautiful, tiny, unknown, and heart-defining.

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Now she’s ten. I wrote about her last year when she turned nine. Not much has changed about her since then. Except she has decided that she doesn’t sing, because she’s also decided she’s a tomboy. And tomboys don’t sing. She has decided that above all else, she loves playing sports and she loves doing art. She’s good at sports…takes to them naturally. Every time I watch her on the basketball court or soccer field I wonder what she’d be able to do if we actually practiced at home. She recently began learning how to make powerpoint slides, just for fun, using every possible exciting transition she can find. As well as audio clips. We’ve discovered that she can memorize just about anything IF allowed to move around while working on it. So, we jump around the house to work on European countries, and run the porch steps while learning spelling words.

I’ve heard her stand up for what she believes, and it appears as though she has a more conservative take on life than her parents do. She will fearlessly try any new adventure, but completely panics if she thinks she’s been left alone in the house. She drove a go-cart for the first time on her birthday, and loved it. She screamed her heart out watching Kansas play in the Final Four…. possibly loving the screaming more than the game. She, as a daughter, defined our family for nearly 5 years before her brother arrived. She, as a person, has profoundly affected my life and my faith. I love her deeply…. fiercely. A long time ago I stopped trying to interpret her actions and responses through the grid of my own personality. She is, in many ways, not at all like me. I try to remember every day that we are constantly teaching her something, whether we intend to or not, so we’d best intend to. Ten years we’ve been at this. We still pray every day.

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