Sunday evening I invited Cordelia to take a walk with me after dinner. Eric and Elise made plans to ride bikes and snuggle in the hammock. I had a bit of an ulterior motive; Cordelia has been struggling a bit with her emotions lately and we have been working, with great success, to help her feel like she has tools to control her big feelings. The most effective tool has been making more time for one-on-one interaction every day. Cordelia has a lot going on in her mind and giving her the opportunity to share without interruption or distraction has been so rewarding.
So she and I set out toward the south, the light was absolutely golden and the temperature was perfect. I looked down at the light reflecting off of her hair and ran my hand through her shining locks. She looked up at me and smiled, her hand in mine.
We walked and she talked and talked. She talked about anything and everything. I soaked it all in, marveling at this girl who has made me grow so much. She is that delightful mix of innocent wisdom, "Sometimes people are mean to others when they are really just upset with themselves," and big dreams,"Do you think I could really be the first girl to go to Mars?"
I let her lead the way. She led us up and down the familiar streets of our neighborhood. Sometimes we held hands, other times we walked side by side. We paused to throw leaves into the creek and to watch ants and to run through a couple of sprinklers. We peered into backyards and eventually we made our way to the park. She worked on the monkey bars a bit, she is turning out to be quite athletic, before we wandered into an area that has trails through dense foliage.
She asked me if we could explore. So we did. When we found a little hollow she claimed it for our family. All the while she would say things like,"I am having so much fun. I hope Elise is having fun with Dad, because I don't want her to feel bad about all the fun we are having."
Honestly I don't have the words to express what a treasure this walk was to me. I love hearing what is going on in Cordelia's mind. She is so smart and creative and compassionate and funny.
Eric and Elise also had their own special evening as well.