There's a party goin' on right here.
A celebration to last throughout the years.
Speaking of celebrations, it seems to be making the rounds on Facebook that this is "National Daughter's Week". I've never heard of it so I did what any self respecting truth-seeker would do...I Googled it. While singing Kool & the Gang in my head, something I will now be doing for at least the next few hours. There's a reason so many weddings and parties end with that song...you take the party with you. But I digress, as usual.
Google had nothing confirming this "Daughter's Week" business as an official thing. Which is good when I think about it. First, I've got enough Mommy Guilt about other issues...I am, after all, about to serve baked potato wedges to the only two children on the planet who don't like french fries (HOW are they mine again?). I don't need to realize I've been neglectful of my daughters' special "holiday week" on top of that. Second, why only a week? Why not a month or a year or a lifetime? There's supposed to be a starting and stopping point for celebrating those always amazing, often annoying, children of mine? But what if I want to do that every.single.day? Because I do. The girls would certainly be thrilled to hear that. When you're their age it's not a REAL celebration unless there's cake, so if I'm celebrating then we get to have one. Every night. Right? Um, yeah, that's not going to happen.
Instead, I avoid the sugar coma and dental bills and celebrate them in my own, non-cake dependent, ways. The kids see them as just "regular stuff we do" rather than as celebrations, but to me each of them is worth treasuring. We read stories at bedtime and go on weekend "working breakfasts" at Wegmans (world's best grocery store, for those of you not lucky enough to have one where you live) where we catch up on reading and homework and each other's lives while we nibble. I put notes in their lunches on big test days or other special occasions and sneak kisses and hugs whenever I can manage. Big, especially, is in a major "NO KISSES!" phase but if I ask nicely she might deign to allow me to fake it. Both of them took fifth birthday trips to Disney World with me. We do breakfast for dinner when their Dad is out of town, have tea parties on weekends, and flash each other the ASL sign for "I Love You" across crowded rooms. Big is "my sunshine" and I love Little "to the moon and back", songs and books and sentiments that go back to when each of them was an infant and have lasted ever since in our day-to-day lives.
Developing all of those little traditions that help define my relationships with my girls has made me realize that my parents did the same in their own ways, way back when. We had Wednesday dinners out as soon as my dad got home from work (ahhh, I miss the York Steak House!), Dairy Queen sundaes on hot summer nights, the annual vacation to Disney World. Does anybody else remember E-ticket attractions? I never thought of those as rituals that made four people a family but that's exactly what they were. I'm constantly amazed at how much I learn about being a daughter the longer I spend being a mother.
In honor of National Daughter's Lifetime, which is a holiday I can get behind, here's a little something inspired by my girls, an aluminum crescent moon riveted to a brass cog and hand stamped "To the Moon & Back" -
A "You Are My Sunshine" pendant is tops on the to-do list, and I've got an ASL "I Love You" stamp that has definite possibilities, too. Just so that they never, ever forget they've always got a cheerleader named Mom in their corner. Even if she does serve them glorified french fries with dinner.