I started a practice at the end of 2013 that I’m so glad I started. It goes on the list of the best things I’ve done.
I started a journal for (and about) my daughter, Kamea. It’s a journal where I simply write a few notes about the day we had, or things that were special, or just a little something about my feelings for her. Capturing the moment for her (and me) as best I can.
It’s not only a beautiful thing to read myself, thinking back on our time together as I read the entries, but it’s going to be something special for her. When she’s older I will put it all in a book or something and give it to her as a gift. I keep it a secret for now. Perhaps I’ll tell her about it sooner than later, but for now, it’s my own special gift to us.
I liken it to those baby books you’re supposed to fill out as your baby goes through their first year. Does anyone ever do that? I know I didn’t. At one point, my mom was going to do it just so it’d be done. Well, she didn’t do it either – for Kamea or for me as a baby (go figure). I think some of them get filled out, with hopes and aspirations of doing it all, but who has the energy or time with a newborn?
So, here I am doing something similar but I waited until December 23, 2013 to start. I guess she was about 3 1/2 years old. I wish I’d started sooner, but I didn’t know I wanted to do this. I think on December 23 I was moved to write some notes, not expecting to journal it when I looked in awe at her sleeping. I took out my cell phone and opened up the “notes” app and typed the following:
December 23, 2013
I’m in awe of you, Kamea, my little princess. You’re so cute and beautiful. I turn to you while you’re sleeping next to me and I see your little head on the pillow. Angel.
It was fun seeing your excitement at Nana’s as Christmas Eve approaches. You watched Dora and Doc McStuffins while chomping on pumpkin seeds. Oh how I love you.
It’s not long, but I was moved to try and capture the moment somehow. Writing it down was perfect. And, I decided at that point that I would regularly do this and someday share it with her.
I’ve learned that, for me, the best time for this is at night when I’m in bed reflecting on the day we had. Sometimes I’m too tired but I still do it, even if it’s just a few short lines. I decided that physically writing this in a journal wasn’t going to do the trick because I can’t do that in bed and physical handwriting is not my chosen method.
So, what I’ve done is evolved this practice into using Evernote which spans across all of my devices (phone, iPad, laptop, desktop) and I can add photos. Often times, to make it even easier, I use voice to text to record it so I don’t even need to bother typing it.
Here are a couple of other entries:
December 25, 2013
You are so cute, Kamea. You sang, danced, and played all day. When I broke my toe you ran over to kiss it and told me it would be OK.
You told jokes and loved opening presents. We bought you a Mini Cooper battery operated car and you drove it in Nana’s driveway.
December 27, 2013
You still fall asleep many nights on my chest. The feel of your weight on my body is so good. I cherish it.
You didn’t want to leave Nana’s today… you rarely do. So much fun there. Today you watched your favorite shows, played with your figurines, and gave lots of kisses.
January 10, 2014
This past week I took you to your first movie at the theater: Frozen. You sat through the whole thing munching on popcorn that I brought for you… piece by piece. At the end of the movie you cried and cried because it was over and you wanted to watch it again so the following day we took daddy.
I will never forget when we walked in and you saw that big screen in the lobby by the concession stand and you exclaimed, “Wow I’ve never seen a TV so big!”
And on and on… I love reading these entries and it refreshes my memory.
I recently had this delightful day where she really went to town with her outfit and imagination as she played by the fountain. I wrote about it and added the photo to Evernote in her journal.