Tonight she told me that she wished she could go back in time and do some things differently (in her short 10 year old life). This statement did not sit well with me, her self-proclaimed "No Regrets Ever" mother.
"Why, honey?" I asked. "Why would you want to go back in time?"
"Well, for three reasons," she answered. "For starters, I would want to dress a little nicer all of the time. All I do is wear t-shirts and shorts and if I change how I look now, everyone will wonder why I am changing my look. I wish I would have started dressing a little nicer earlier in life."
"Ok," I listened, "why else?"
"Second," she continued, "I would pay more attention in school. I would be a really really good student. Would read all the time, and I would be really smart."
"I see," I said, "and number three?"
"Well," she said, "I'd go back to when I could have met your Daddy, and I would get to know him, and I would work to find whatever it was that made him die and make sure that he didn't get that so he wouldn't have died."
Yes . . . she has a way of always melting my heart.
"Well, honey," I told her, "you know that you can't go back in time. But you can be who ever you want to be in your life. That is what is so great about it . . . each and every day you get a chance to wake up and start it again. Each and every day you can walk over to that closet and put on whatever you want . . . and no one has the right to say anything to you about it. So if you want to dress differently . . . go ahead and do it! And each and every day, you make a choice to be the person you want to be. If you want to do well in school, you can. If you want to focus more, do it. If you want to read more, we can do it together. You can do whatever you want in this amazing life of yours, Katie."
She listened with wide opened eyes at each word I said, as if it was almost giving her permission to be who she wants to be.
"As for my Daddy," I continued, "I sure wish you could have met him, honey. He would have loved you and he would have thought you were pretty amazing, too."
We were interrupted by a loud fit of laughter coming Ella and her friend.
"I am proud of you, honey," I said as I hugged her tight. "I am proud of the person you were yesterday, the person you are today, and the person you dream of being tomorrow."
"Thanks, Mom," she said.
It sure is hard to be 10.
And as for my 10 year old, I couldn't be prouder.