Small 1

It’s nearly summertime here in the great Northeast and that means my daughter will be going to camp soon.  It’s her first time going anywhere other than daycare and there are a few issues this brings up.  There’s the obvious anxiety (mine more than hers), getting into a new routine, and making new friends.  But there’s one more thing that I need to address with everyone who might have the pleasure of meeting her;

My daughter’s small.  At 4 years old she’s still hovering just under 30 pounds and 37 inches.

Whenever she’s with kids her age she’s the smallest one by several inches.  When she goes in the pool she can’t touch the bottom, even in the therapy pool.  She’s not big enough to ride some of the little kid rides at our local fair, and she couldn’t go in most of the bouncy-playscapes at a friend’s birthday party.

She’s small.

But she is mighty.

My girl was born 8 weeks early, weighing 2 lbs 5 oz and didn’t need assistance breathing.

She said only one word, Dada (of course, right?), until she was 18 months old, but she learned more than 300 ASL signs.

She held on to us for a full 6 months before she took an independent step, but then she was off and running.  Now she’s like lightning.

She can’t reach the rung on the playground climber thing.  No worries.  She’ll find another way.

She doesn’t need help getting up to that rung.  She doesn’t need intervention to talk or walk.  She doesn’t need pity because she has to find another way.

She is small, but she is mighty.

She doesn’t need to be handled with kid gloves.  If she makes that adorable, sad puppy dog face, she’s just trying to get her way, like every other child.

She’s not a delicate little flower.  She’s got her share of cuts and bruises from climbing, hiking, biking, and jumping off every piece of furniture in the house.  And she’s proud of every one of them.

You don’t need to follow her around, arms outstretched, ready to catch her if she falls.  She knows how to handle herself.  Yes, she falls sometimes.  And you know what she does?  She gets back up!

She’s got an adventurous spirit.  She wants to explore, not be held back.

Don’t hold your hand in front of her face to keep her from getting splashed.  She’ll dunk her head under water and jump in the pool faster than you can say, “Who wants to go swimming?”  It will make you insanely nervous until she pops up at the surface spitting water like a Roman fountain.

She’s not going to break if you give her a good push on the swings.  She loves to go high!  She will race everyone to the top of the tallest slide and be the first one down.  She loves to go fast.

She’s brave, courageous, and daring.  Silly, funny, and caring.  She’s come a long way in her short life and her amazing spirit will carry her through much more.

So, please, don’t underestimate my child because she’s small.

She is small, but she is mighty.

Small 3

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