Happy Birthday, my little love. It seems hard to believe that you are nine years old today. (And yes, I thought seriously about smacking our friend Mike when he reminded me that you are now "half-way gone." It's a good thing that he looked as anguished as I felt, and, also, that his daughter is older.)
It was a wonderful day with you. I wish I had been able to take more pictures but most of my favorite moments could not be captured on film. My favorite memories are of you rolling out of bed and heading for the bathroom, turning on the light and announcing, "Whoa, Mom, my face has evolved."
(I wish I was so conscious of the various evolutions of my face, and that they happened on dates I could remember.)
For the rest of my life, I will see you sitting, small and resolute, under your headphones on the bench at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Museum. In front of the John Lennon documentary, you sat singing "All we are saying is give peace a chance" over and over again, full voice.
And then again, at the end of the Broadway production of West Side Story, when Tony has been shot and Maria is insane with grief, you sat crying real tears. Because, Jane? There is nothing wrong with your heart --it is bigger than Texas.
It seems fitting that today, on your Ninth Birthday, that I can honestly say that I love you more than I ever have. Less than tomorrow, yeah, but more than ever. I can't wait until you take over the world, girlfriend.