Some days 11 comes sweeping over me like an unexpected gust of wind. I sit and keenly observe the smallest details of 11 years of life, like how an everyday giggle reveals the dimples I once marveled in during her first days after birth. 11 is just different, it's right on the cusp of the world opening up to a new found independence. For me, I sense the independence when she hops in the shower without needing the water adjusted or when I see her ballet bag packed and hanging on the doorknob for her class following school. Sometimes those tiny gestures just quietly rattle me. They rattle me in the sense of how quickly the last 11 years have passed, but also they delight me in recognizing what a wonderful young woman she is becoming.
We celebrated her 11th birthday with a sushi dinner where she ordered sashimi and a kids meal, which seemed so appropriate for 11, one foot in childhood and one well seasoned foodie foot firmly planted. I sat across the table from her, full of joy through out the entire meal. I laughed as her cheeks lit up bright red when the lights dimmed, the disco ball was turned on, and the entire restaurant sang her happy birthday, a candle just balanced in a ball of green tea ice cream placed in front of her. As she blew out the lone candle, my mind thought for the millionth time that day, this is 11.
We walked across the street to the Boulder Theater to watch, Pretty Faces, a ski movie made by Lynsey Dyer, which was the first ski movie to be entirely composed of all women athletes. At 11, my daughter, an avid skier since the age of 3, sat in the sold out Boulder Theater and watched a ski movie all about women skiers. The athletes came on stage, they signed posters, and my girl had her photo taken with Lynsey, a kick ass advocate and role model for girls. That old time notion, the world is your oyster, it was palpable that night.
Life is so incredibly beautiful at 11, I can only imagine the places it will go.
Unicorn Picnic | Pretty Faces Teaser from Unicorn Picnic Productions on Vimeo.