Wednesday, September 07, 2011

To Kate on her Birthday

We met 8 or 9 years ago.

A move-in La Leche League Leader (Leader Applicant?) with a toddler the same age as Middle and a small baby in your arms, a passion for attachment parenting and supporting nursing moms, paired with an unconventional approach to the world and a lack of tolerance for petty bullshit - it didn't take long for us to become close friends and confidantes.

Since then, we've led our LLL Group together, cyberschooled together, endured / enjoyed Lego Robotics teams together, and challenged ourselves at the dojang together. We've seen each other at our best and our worst, we've laughed and cried, talked each other "off the ledge" and logged countless (and I really mean countless) hours of in-depth conversations about life, parenting, marriage, interpersonal crap, strengths, weaknesses, perfectionism, frustrations, martial arts, literature, science, philosophy, education, gardening, homesteading, animal behavior, child behavior, adult behavior - and often the connections between the three.

We enrolled our young kids in Hogwarts Correspondence Academy one summer together and had much more fun with that than I think they ever did - putting together the curriculum, making wands, and imagining that owls were delivering lessons to our houses.

We've planned adventures and field trips, we've hiked and camped, relaxed at the pool and tubed on the creek.

We've also kicked, punched, grappled, swept, thrown, twisted and pinned each other. We've practiced kata, stressed over tests, talked through frustrations and celebrated each other's successes both in and out of the dojang.

You've shared your children with me and have loved and supported my own kids unwaveringly, even at their worst moments. You've helped me step back and see things through their eyes when I was ready to disown them; you've been the calm in my parenting storm more times than I can count.

You've seen me through some of the darkest times I've had, and have loved and listened and nurtured and served as the Voice of Reason more times than anyone should ever have to.

So today, on your birthday, I'm celebrating you and how much your friendship has meant to me these many years. Your impact on my life, my sanity, and my own journey as a mother, a wife, a martial artist, and a person has been immesurable. I love you dearly and wish for you a year of happiness and success, especially as you prepare for the challenges of 1) puberty and 2) your black belt test. (Both of which you will handle masterfully, I might add.) You are one of the strongest, smartest, and most loyal people I know and I am so grateful to have you in my life.

Happy Birthday!


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Aw, thumbs up! Happy birthday, Kate! Elaine