Nine is halfway between a newborn and a high school senior, off to college.
Nine is soccer practice, but still needing me to tie his cleats.
Nine is knowing obscene language but still snuggling with a stuffed animal at night.
Nine is wanting more freedom but needing boundaries.
Nine is learning to play the recorder and the violin.
Nine is multiplication tables and then fractions.
Nine is wearing shorts and high socks even on chilly days.
Nine is Monopoly and Checkers.
Nine is palate expanders and braces.
Nine is no longer a baby or even a little kid.
Nine is not yet a tween or a teen.
Nine is reading chapter books together.
Nine is being brave and trying the trapeze.
Nine is letting go but holding on tight, too.
Nine is a moment in time to cherish.
Happy 9th birthday to the "bear of my heart"- my brave, strong, smart, handsome son Alex.
Kathleen Neagle Sokolowski