Letters to Everly

Dear Everly,

You have always been a daddy’s girl. From the very start, really.  I’ve had the great honor of protecting you, singing to you, loving on you and providing for you - but so often, when you feel sick or sad or just need some extra comforting, it’s daddy that you want. Your affections for me have been great, but it’s always been pretty obvious that daddy hangs the moon in your world.

I’ve tried hard not to let it get me down. The two of you have spent so much time together during your days while I’ve been at work. Since Arlo was born, I’ve been available even less as I’ve needed to nurse him and take care of some of his special needs. I feel guilty sometimes and worry that I’ve failed you in some way. But I try to remind myself that my experiences with you are always precious and there will be many stages in your preferences as you grow. I know my time with you will come. Mamas and daughters get to do special things together that no one else can do and there is a role that only we can fulfill in each other’s lives.

Recently, you’ve started to show me this. I am realizing just how much you observe and want to mimic me. You’ve been asking to wear a pony tail “like mommy’s” which is a first as you usually just rip out whatever I put in your hair. You like to sit at your desk and bang on your little laptop and say “I workin’” like mommy. You pick up your babies and rock them and say “Shhhh. Shhhh baby. I mommy”  In the evenings after I put your brother to sleep, I will find you snuggled up with daddy on the couch in your jammies watching a little bit of Dora before bed. You’ve started to say “I want mommy” and Daddy and I will trade places. You snuggle your little body right into me and I play with your hair. We tell pretend secrets (you like to whisper gibberish in my ear and then laugh like you told me the best joke ever). We talk about your day and what we will do tomorrow.

It is overwhelming me with happiness, Everly. That you are seeking out one on one time with me even when daddy is there. That you are mimicking me when you play. That I am getting your undivided attention without you asking “Where’s daddy?” or  saying “Daddy do it!”  Last night I put you to bed and I laid down with you for a little while. You wrapped your small arms arms around my neck and just looked at me. I planted a kiss on your cheek and you giggled. You gave me one back and we went back and forth like this for a few minutes. I whispered I love you. you whispered “I you too”. and when I closed the door behind me on the way out, I marveled at the affectionate, joyful little girl you have become.

You will always be a daddy’s girl and that’s something to be proud of. You are so lucky to have a daddy that is so involved in your care and well being.  But thank you, baby girl, for giving me a place on your pedestal too. I’d be a liar if I didn’t admit I’ve wanted it for so long. Thank you for reminding me that my role in your life is unique and lovely. And for making mama feel like even though daddy hung the moon, you still need me to hang your stars.

I wish for ten thousand nights with you.

I love you,

Mama