On My Tray of Bliss today is the dilemna facing many Mums of Tweenies these days.
How to preserve those last fading moments of 'childhood' before our daughters fling themselves headlong into the dreaded adolescent years.
The Diva is still very child-like in so many ways. She loves cuddles, snuggling up to Dad, and prefers our company to that of others...well for the most part.
But we know that these moments now have a expiry date.
For her to curl up on my lap now entails folding herself virtually in half with arms and legs dangling everywhere. For her to sit with Dad to watch TV, now means Dad moving to the big couch to give them both room...no more curling up in a corner of a single recliner chair.
This was brought home to me even further on the weekend.
The Diva had her first Theatre performance. In terms of what she's done to this point, and having danced for 8 years, it was kiddy stuff. A pantomime in a local theatre, aimed at the 3-10 year old demographic.
But The Diva was in a fever.
The hair had to be right, she wanted to do her own makeup including eyeliner and mascara, she wanted to arrive at the Theatre 15 minutes before the scheduled time for performers, she didn't want me to take her photo in front of the theatre for posterity, she didn't want me to escort her in...welll, you get the picture. Miss Independence was rearing her pretty head.
I swallowed my Maternal Pride and having snapped my photo for her scrapbook, left her to it. I watched from the door as she wandered in, suitably theatrically attired (think black striped loose T-dress, opaque tights, black converse and dark denim jacket with home made bag made from an old pair of jeans slung casually over one shoulder), and embraced her new friends enthusiastically.
This theatre stuff is different to the dancing she's been doing for so long. The kids are different too. They're not the Designer Fashionistas that we know and love from dancing. Young girls who love labels, jewellery and never leave the house without a fancy hairstyle. These kids are more low key, a bit arty, don't give a toss for fashion, and have a certain warmth about them that sometimes lacks in the whirlwind of dancing...not because the kids aren't lovely, but because it's all so serious.
If you saw my post a week or two ago about Theatre Industry Snobbery, you'll understand where I'm coming from.
I don't believe for a second that The Diva will abandon dancing, but rather foresee her reducing her commitment to Dance to embrace Theatre.
I'm okay with that...although my heart squeezes at the thought of her not using her graceful limbs to be a ballerina before she gets too tall.
It's hard...the start of this letting go business.
I'll get there. I know she's destined for something in the Arts. My role now is to GUIDE her, rather than making those decisions FOR her.
It's not a bad problem to have, but I want to look back in ten years and have a sense of having done 'the right thing'.
The only one who knows that for sure is the Greater Spirit in whatever form you believe that exists.
And in that sense, I have to leave some of it to The Universe, don't I?
What's on your Tray of Bliss today?