Happy Birthday Sophie Loafie Lovie Dove!!!

The Soph turns 10 today. TEN. T-E-N. Lord when did that happen? I know, I know, such a cliche. But for reals, where does the time go? Just yesterday Sophie was running around the apartment roaring like a tiger. She was almost three years old and I was washing the dishes. “Mama!! I’m a tiger! Roar….Roar….ROARRRRRRR!!!!!!!” She screamed. “Yes, Sophie, you are a scary tiger!” I said kind of absentmindedly while I continued washing and not turning around. “MAMA!!!! I’M…..A…..TIGER!!!!!!! ROARRRRRRR!!!!!” She screamed insistently. Obviously I was supposed to turn around. So I turned around to look at the very scary tiger. And my jaw just hung open. There before me was a naked toddler except for a diaper. And she had drawn red tiger stripes over EVERY inch of her body, from her face to between her toes. In red SHARPI. “Well, Sophie I said, you are going to be a tiger for a couple of weeks!!” And she giggled and ran out of the room.

Not too much has changed about The Soph. She does her own thing, she is her own person. She dresses how she wants and I DARE you to make her go put on another shirt that ‘matches.” If she wants to wear it, so be it. On Saturday we had a slumber party for her birthday and that morning we ran around getting her decorations, balloons and cake. At the party store she found these ridiculous glasses and hat that she HAD to have. She didn’t take them off until after her party started. In every store she got stared at and looked at and giggled WITH. She knew she was making people look at her and she LOVED it. She smiled back at them and just walked on by. “Mama, people keep smiling at me. I like that.” she kept saying. “I guess I make people happy.” She takes pride in not getting embarrassed. I was told at least three times that morning how great my daughter’s ‘style’ was. I have to agree. Whole-heartedly.

She is my bubble of chaotic sunshine that lights up a room and brings a frenzy of energy where ever she goes. She walk around with my heart every day. Sophie is who I want to be when I grow up. She lives in the moment, she tries new things for the experience. If she is good at them is of absolutely no importance. She has been on the basketball team, the swim team, the chess team, in school plays, the science olympiad, and every single talent show the school has ever had. And Sophie IS good at these things, but she does not care if she wins or not. She loves the DOING. She loves the exhilaration of being watched, of facing a fear of just TRYING. Sure, she likes it when she wins, but if she doesn’t she just moves on, maybe hugging her friend that did win.

That is just the Soph. Things roll off her back. She is passionate and fiery. She knows what she wants and will fight to get it. She has so many loves in her life at any given moment, and in those moments she gives every single one of her passions 1000%. Lately at night she sits next to me in front of the tv, me drawing in my sketchbook, her drawing in hers. She is drawing hieroglyphics she saw in her Egyptology book, or she is drawing dresses for fashion designs she thinks up in her head, or she is copying illustrations from the latest children’s book I have just bought. She loves to create anything and everything. She is forever creating something to go to sell at school and she comes home with orders for book covers or cards or whatever – it seems that whatever Sophie makes, she can sell. To boys and girls. That child sold an embellished book cover with SATIN trim to a boy in her class. Yeah, she can sell an eskimo some snow.

Sophie is not scared of what people think about her. I think that is what I am most in awe of. It took me over thirty years to figure out that my life is the only one I get and that life is way too short to constantly worry about what the world thinks of me. Sophie seems to have figured that out from birth. “Look, I’m gonna try this new thing, and I have never done it before, and I may fall on my butt and look stupid. But then I will laugh WITH you. And it will be ok.”

That is the Soph. She is my love. Good God, I adore this child. Every day I hope I become more like her. A roaring red striped tiger, not scared of taking on the world.

A sample of Sophie’s unique style….She wore this to school yesterday.

This was her birthday party outfit. Did you think I was kidding?

I love my girl!

And pretty, pretty Soph, just hanging out.


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