Little Girl, Big Girl

Still a kid!
On August 16, my wife posted on Facebook:

"Love 10 year old girls who still like to play dress up!"

(Joanna had invited over a handful of girls that we've come to know through camps and after school programs.)

Then, on August 20, she posted:

"Thinking how different today would be if I was sending my oldest off to middle school and my youngest to Kindergarten. It's a weird feeling and it makes me glad we are home schooling all together."

Today, Hannah is 11 years old. Not fully a child, not yet a woman. What an interesting phase.

She still likes to dress up, play with Lego bricks, and make "fairy houses" outside. But she is more into shopping and clothes. But not boys, yet.

She can go from fun and playful and adventurous, while also occasionally becoming emotional and upset. (I guess she's not much different than her parents, huh?)

Adolescence is an interesting time. As the speaker in this video explains, during this phase the brain changes rapidly and immensely.

What does that mean for my dearest daughter? I think about the untapped potential that is within her brain, her heart, her soul.

I think about the culture's expectation that the teenage years are meant to be merely survived. But then I think about how so many mentors have shared that the teenage years are to be awaited for, not dreaded.

I think about how my role is shifting from director to coach, from giving commands to giving non-binding counsel. Not sure if I'm ready for this.

It must be a scary time for her. I know it is for me.

"Hannah" means grace. That's what she is to me -- God's gracious gift. She'll always be a treasured gift to me, and to others.

PS -- I've also decided (and warned Hannah) that 11 is the official age when I'm allowed to start embarrassing her in public. It's on.

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