To Chotto-ma:

You turned eight today. So I’m sitting here trying to draw you a phoenix because I know it’ll make you squeal with joy.

As you grow older, I find myself less willing to write about you. Not about the books you love and the rocks you collect, but about the person you are. Your thoughts, your heart, the way you look at the world – the things that really matter, the things that make you the very unique eight-year-old you are. So if you’re reading the blog some day, when you’re as old as me, and see the silences here, know that I’m keeping you to myself. I’m keeping you to yourself.

When we decide to leave our phones and cameras at home for the day, and then suddenly find ourselves living a moment – like you picking wildflowers in the sunset – and I wish I could take a photograph, you remind me of what I’d once told you, “Ma, we can take a photo with our memory.”

So that’s what we’re doing, Ba and I. We’re taking photos in the privacy of our memories. And telling you, every day, with words and squishes and the occasional phoenix, how much we love you.

You make us believe in magic.

11 thoughts on “Eight

  1. The first post I read on your blog was Chotto-ma's fifth birthday post. Three years since then. Happiest of birthdays to you, Chotto- ma. And may you have a million- million memory- photos to always fall back on. Hugs and love.

  2. Happy birthday Chotto Ma. Maybe some day I'll meet the fine and fun young lady she is growing up to be!

    Much as I'll miss your posts on her I do also get the bit about keeping her to herself.
    I myself am less comfortable sharing Mia's thoughts and dreams and those many little things way more than the odd picture on facebook..(Im sure people have excellent reasons for the latter)

  3. Yes, you'd know what I mean. Their minds need far more privacy that an odd photograph, which of course people must want/need to share on Facebook, especially when they stay far from friends and relatives. (I do enjoy seeing Mia's happy face pop up on Instagram every now and then!)

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