This picture of Maya (circa 2003 and first grade) always makes me gasp. A first grade girls should not look like that. I remember buying her that dress. It was cotton with embroidered butterflies. It had long sleeves that came down over the tops of her hands in little V's. The skirt was also in a V shape in the front and back. On the rack the dress looked so adorable. So little-girl.
On Maya, it looked completely different.
She takes my breath away to this day with her beauty. The thing about it, though, is she always backs it up in spirit.
Tonight I came home to two breathless girls begging me to go to their schools "Skate Night". It is held a Tiffany's Skate Inn Roller Rink here in town, and it is always horrible (for me). It's cold in there - unless you are skating - crowded, loud, and lasts from 6:30 - 8:30, rendering the entire evening useless for anything else.
I am mean and I said "No".
The begged and pleaded more. The finished their homework without me asking. They offered to pay their own way in. There was nothing to do but relent.
I knew immediately why it was so important for Maya to be there the minute I pulled up. See that kid in the upper left corner of the picture making the crazy face? Yeah? That's Mikey. Maya loves Mikey and always has. This year (5th grade) it is something a little more than just thinking he is really funny and wanting to sit by him because he tells good jokes.
This year she wants to skate with him.
Of all the kids in her class, if forced to choose, I would also choose Mikey for Maya to have her first little crush on. Mikey is funny. He is fast in races. He is actually polite. He came to Maya's violin recital last year even though he played no instrument. Mikey is okay in my book.
As I was walking out of Tiffany's Skate Inn last night Mikey's Mom tapped me on the shoulder. I have always liked her, but don't really know her. I know that she volunteers in the class a lot. I know that she is quiet and reserved and has a kind face. These things make a good first impression as far as I am concerned.
Mikey's Mom said, "I just wanted to tell you something. If I had a daughter, I would want her to be just like Maya. I see the girls in her class starting to really play some mean games with each other this year, and Maya doesn't do it. She is so caring and good. If Mikey ever brings someone like Maya home someday, I will be the happiest Mother in the world."
Wow. That is some good stuff for a parent to hear.
I am so proud to know that my daughter comes across to the world as I have always felt she comes across to me....
But Mikey better not get to friendly or I will make his face stick like that.