Because it’s now that I’m here and I write, this list will live in this place, not for now but for later. Not for today, when just tonight at 8:08, we cheered and said hooray! It’s been a decade, 10 whole years! since you came twirling into the world. Not tonight, when we ate lemon bars and roast chicken and everyone in our lives called to wish you happy 10th. You tried on new earrings, clutched new books to your chest, and said thank you to everyone. You don’t need any advice today. You’ve got this all down.
But another time. When you’re older, and you feel like you don’t know what you used to know.
10 things to remember, later. (Because on this night where I have been mothering for exactly 10 years, I’d like to remember them too.)
In no particular order.
1. Be excited about the things you are excited about. Show it. Cheer for those things. Don’t be afraid to be a beginner.
2. Don’t worry too much about hair removal.
3. Keep eggs and pasta in the kitchen at all times. That way, when you don’t know what to eat for dinner, there’s always carbonara.
4. Live close to the knowledge of your own inevitable death. Try to make each day so that it would be okay if it were the very last day.
5. Just give over and decide to love doing dishes.
6. When you find the person you love, kiss them at least once a day. (Really kiss.)
7. When you are invited, say yes.
8. Don’t wear anything that makes it hard to breathe or walk.
9. Eat sitting down, unless it is crackers and cheese at 4:00, and that should be eaten at the counter while you stare out the window.
10. If it’s too spicy, add honey. If it’s too bland, add lemon. If it’s too salty, add water. But if it still doesn’t taste good, let it go. (See #4)