Thursday was a big day for us. Ada's end-of-semester assembly, for the end of her first-ever semester. As I watched her, sparkling on the stage in her pink sequins and shiny voice, my eyes welled up with pride and amazement as I reflected on how much she has done in a single year. Allow me to share an open letter to her with you:
Oh Ada, you are our shiny star. Here is some of what you have done since last Christmas:
You can now read! You started reading in February, and you took to it like a duck to water. You read everything you see, and scour our shelves for new books, and delight in the library at school. You love narrative, and you love when we read to you. James and the Giant Peach, Cherry Ames, Desperaux, and the Bobbsey Twins have been so fun to discover and rediscover through your eyes. All of this reading is thrilling for your dad and me. It is a pleasure you will never tire of, and one that will enrich your life immeasurably.
You can swim! For you, getting into the water was not as easy as getting into a book, but true to your strong self, you tried and tried. This year, you not only shed your "floaty suit," but you also managed to get your face in the water. And then at your lesson this Thursday, you swam real strokes, face in the water, no floaty needed. Better yet, you wanted to stay and swim and swim and swim! Oh dear girl, you are proving to yourself you can do anything you set your mind to. We are so proud of you!
This September, you stood up to your fear of meeting new children, and you strode bravely into school. Again and again, you proved to yourself and all of us around you how grown-up you are, how caring and outgoing and wise you are. You not only made friends with all of the kids in your class, but you've become known as a go-to gal, a real friend. You help G. with his shoelaces and N. with his rowdy behavior. You comfort friends like G. when she is sad. When E. was rude to you on the playground, you stood up for yourself, strongly and politely , saying "I will speak to you when you apologize, E." E apologized, and you forgave her easily, explaining to me, "E just had a rough day. She won't act like that to me again." And you were right. Your generosity extends beyond your forgiveness, too. If you have something nice, you love to give it to someone else, too. You share your snacks and bring treats and pictures for friends (and their dogs, sometimes too).
There are a million other things you have shown us in the past year Here are a few more:
- You care for creatures smaller than yourself. We were impressed with how you cared for your pets, the snails.
- You can take amazing photos. You already know how to share your beautiful viewpoint with the world!
- You are brave! With school, with swimming, with trying things new. This year you were brave enough to talk to Santa.
- You are responsible. You can get yourself ready each morning, including brushing teeth and putting on a headband!
- You take a commitment seriously. You get to work on your homework first thing, even on a playdate. You know that when the work is done, you will be free to play.
Ada, you are a wonderful girl, and once again, you have given us a wonderful year. Your daddy and I know that each year will bring you closer to adulthood, and those years seem to trip away at an ever-accelerating speed. I remind myself all the time to stop and feel how much beauty you bring to my world and to everyone you meet.
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