|Mario's Mother took this Polaroid picture on the day she "met" Alicia|
Alicia was born 29 years ago, our only girl. Tonight, on the back porch, Mario and I shook our heads in disbelief…the time really does go by so fast.
|Alicia's One-year birthday Party --Arnold, CA|
Alicia was born after Mario and I married--David was 8, Joe was 6, and Vince was 2. Alicia’s birth in July of 1988 “sealed the deal and made us real” –we had ourselves a genuine “blended family.”
Alicia did not come into the world softly and gently—she was born in living color, vibrant from a young age. She grew up fast, right before my eyes, developing a genuine love for animals and people. She jumped into everything that life had to offer and devoured it, always drawing a friends to herself. She was a tomboy. She loved to read. She broke every rule that boxed her in.
It all went by so fast.
Sometimes I still wonder where the time with my little daughter went.
Today I looked back on the pictures I have of us—some in various stages of play, some posed, most candid shots where one of us is looking away. Some are taken in the USA; others are taken in Africa; many on planes; some in amusement parks. She is surrounded by friends, family, love, teams, her array of collections. They show how Alicia did not ever settle down.
And then…I came upon my favorite—one she took with my phone this year.
I think she took this the day before Mother’s Day, when she held the camera away from us and clicked before I knew to smile. I look at it now, and realize that this is us. Alicia has a smile that illuminates the world –and the film that captures her. It also shows me, trying to be peaceful as the time ticks away. Like most mothers, I feel like my baby is moving at the speed of light. I wish I could slow down time, just for the sake of having more special times together.
Today, on her birthday, I take a deep breath and remind myself to be grateful. Kahlil Gibran writes:
“Your children are not your children—they are the sons and daughters of life's longing for itself. They come through you but not from you, and though they are with you, yet they belong not to you.…”
Alicia has two beautiful girls of her own, children that remind her of the heartbreaking truth that we cannot hold on to them forever, even if we want to. On this day, I want her to know that she belongs to God--and that is why I can relax. He created her unique and special –and truly beautiful.
Happy Birthday, Alicia. I can never tell you how much I love, but I can try.
Love to you now more than ever,