day 630 | september 8, 2012 | roo turns six

today is roo's sixth birthday. yesterday morning, we made a decision to postpone her birthday party as the whole family, including our lifesaver, is unwell and possibly contagious. i was apprehensive of explaining the situation to roo, knowing that she's been counting down to this day for a couple months now. she cut up the streamers for her party herself -- and she was so giddy about the idea of having all her friends together in one celebration.

what i got in response to my sad news was a firm nod, and a follow-up on whether all her friends know of the new date for the party. i told her i had already buzzed everybody. "OK," she said, not a hint of disappointment. she looked at me, held my hand, and confided "it's ok, mommy. we're going to have so much fun next saturday." and that was the end of it. i think i was a lot more disappointed that she was.
Roo's First Day on Earth
later on, when red woke up and gave her a good morning and happy birthday hug, roo crouched down to ask red in a very grown up way to try to be nice and not-so-rough. "just try," she reiterated, "for my birthday." red looked like she sort-of understood. just sort-of.
Our First Photoshoot in Manila, Image Credit to Blow-Up Babies
this is the roo that surprises me at every turn. i have expectations of how a child her age would react, paired with how i would feel if i were her, and she almost always comes back with a response that is beyond her age; confident and compassionate. that's not to say she doesn't have her cheeky, devious days...
 or her tantrum diva moments... (all six of them since she came out of my womb!)
One of Roo's handful of tantrums, during her very mild version of terrible twos
i've grown up with her, perhaps as much, as she's grown up with me...
My constant companion, especially as a Stay-At-Home Mom in KL
she has inspired me to do more and be more, to look for beauty and goodness in everything and everyone. my photography is as much her craft as mine...
Roo at 3 :)
 and she has invited my inner child out and taught it the meaning of play...
she's grown up now. i'm no longer her sole companion. she wants broader horizons. she keeps great friends and is being influenced by other people.
Roo at 4, The Friend-Maker
there are role models everywhere. just as she reminds me of life's rules (courtesy, kindness, not hurting other people),  she's also started to question why some things have to be the way they are.
she was excited to be a big sister, and is oh-so-willing to share everything with little red. there's a hint of pride when she introduces her little sister to her friends. "she's my little sister, you know."
Roo and Red with very close friend, Red's First Month Celebration
it was painful for her as it was for me to move away from KL. just when she had built a network of great friends, we had to leave them for a new chapter of life. that was the first time I saw the light in roo's eyes dim. she was depressed through the first six months of school in singapore, though she tried to mask it with her rubber ducky smiles.
Roo starts Kindergarten in Singapore, 4.5 YO
soon though, the light was back. red is growing up to be a quirky, fun, albeit challenging playmate. i am a shared companion, and playtime is a three-way party.
Roo at 5, and Red at 1, Constant Companions 
and we have nurtured a network of friends here in singapore, a fabulous and fun bunch who roo feels a special kind of kinship for.
she's grown up. she'll be stepping into primary school next year, and there are plenty of adventures ahead where she can showcase her personality, maturity and creativity, and most of them without me watching over her. right now, we're learning to let go and trying to find a definition of life as we love it.  i'm trying to teach with play alongside gentle tones and firm discipline. roo is using the same tools to try to teach red what she's learned so far. soon, we will have to re-define our relationship from mother-daughter to confidante-friends.

at this moment though, i'm just holding memories close -- and celebrating a life-changing gift that is roo. happy birthday, fairy princess!


mummybean said...

It was so lovely to see Roo grow in your photos! She sounds like a lovely, mature girl. Happy birthday to her and I hope you guys have a wonderful birthday celebration next week.

Evelyn said...

Happy birthday Ginger! We've got a little around-the-world surprise for you and Pepper, will bring it along today!

libpuritan said...

Thanks mummybean! ;) Trying to keep as healthy as we can. :)

Mommy E, Thanks for the surprise and looking forward to playing with you and Layla again!

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