Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Heart in my Throat...

4of8 bday portrait1 cross process b&w
She's a year away from being a teenager, basking in her final year as a pre-teen.

But she's got a maturity to her that supersedes her calendar years.

My 4 of 8.

4 of 8 bday portraits3
Having been my latest talker because of her hearing loss, 4 of 8 has been my earliest bloomer. She is tall, tall and her poise makes most folks think she is far older.

Gulp.

Raising two special needs kids, there is such an emotional component to my perception of their growth. To some degree, I want to slow 4 of 8 down a bit, give her a little more time before she has to enter a world that may not always be kind about her hearing loss, give her a little more buffer before she has to deal with the impatience and attitude of some folks.

But, of course, she's already had to deal with some of those issues.

I fret that because she looks so much older, people's expectations of her are going to be unfairly too high. I fret that her mature face will cause her to have to deal with older boys, gossipy girls.

Although 3 of 8 considers himself her self-appointed bouncer.  He is extremely protective of his pretty little sister.

4 of 8 bday portrait 4
But I have to back up, take a breath. From the time she was tiny, she has had to deal with frustrations and challenges far beyond the average bear.

And she has also experienced tremendous accomplishment beyond the common experiences of her peers.

Which has all served to make her older and more mature than her years.

Because of her ears.

And because of what's between her ears, her compassionate mind.

And because of her heart.

Thank goodness she still has braces...

4 of 8 bday portrait 2
That helps disrupt the older teen/ young twenty-something visage a bit.

But there is a maturity and a seasoning and a wisdom in this face that braces can't hide.

4of8 bday portrait1 cross process
What a sage, my 4 of 8.



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