You stand before me in resplendent white. Miles and miles of shimmering tulle. The bejeweled tiara balanced on piles of soft golden curls is just the right touch.
Never have I seen you glow with such pure delight. Is that a hint of fear in your bright blue eyes? Itís okay, Caroline. I see itís just your over developed sense of responsibility again.
Yes, this is a big day and there is a serious side to the celebration. ĎTil death do us partí can be sobering. But Iím sure youíre going to dance and laugh and sing and smile brighter and bigger than ever.
How I wished I could see it. But Iíve seen so much of your life. I wonít complain.
I remember seeing you for the very first time. You were three days old. How your parents fussed over you! You hardly made a peep and one of them came running into the nursery to scoop you up and sit in the rocking chair. I loved watching them rock you, coo over you, tickle you and just hold you. There was such wonder in their eyes.
You kept everyone busy when you were a toddler. Door locks and bed guards hardly kept you down and out of all the places you were not supposed to be!
I remember the first time you actually noticed me. You were about eighteen months old. How puzzled you were to find another child in your room! Your tiny hands reaching out and touching me: sticky, gooey, and dirty. I didnít care. I was glad you discovered me!
As a little girl we played dress-up nearly everyday. Those are some of my favorite memories. Princess, cowgirl, nurse, teacher. You even dressed up like a policeMAN, newspaper reporter and an army general.
I loved when you had friends over and you put on plays and set up stores and school rooms. You and Beverly sure could fight! But you always made up. She looked beautiful in her bridesmaid dress this morning. Iím glad youíre still friends.
Excuse me as I chuckle. Iím remembering high school. So many mornings you dressed five or six times. The mountain of clothes on the floor grew and grew until finally your mom came in and hauled it all to the laundry! Iím glad you got passed the Ďgrungeí stage quickly and ever so happy you didnít follow Beverly into the world of Goth, as brief as it was.
Remember when you played Jo in the school play of Little Women? I loved it when you practiced your lines with me. Seeing you experiment with all the inflections, gestures and facial expressions was entertaining. You really were very good!
The drama I donít like to remember is the sad and dark times. I guess everyone has to go through them.
The day you found out about your momís cancer was particularly unbearable. To see the tormented shattered look in your eyes as you railed against God and threw your Bible across the room just about broke me.
I shutter to remember you standing before me and hating yourself, too. What you saw and what was real were worlds apart. I cringed each morning as you were melting before me. I didnít know how to make you see the truth. To truly show you the protruding hip bones. It was such a relief that as your mom overcame her illness you got the help you needed.
Ah, the prom....remember? It was only two years ago.
You tried on your dress everyday for a month! The deep blue silk shift was so flattering on you. Your eyes sparkled. Mike didnít look too bad either. I wonder what he looks like today? Probably scared silly. Ha ha ha!
Wow! Your mom looks amazing!
Oh, no! Is it time to go already? I knew this day was coming but, well, Iím going to miss you so terribly. Caroline......I canít see you over there. Please, just one more look?
ďWhen you and Daddy bring my boxes over to the house, donít forget the mirror. I couldnít imagine my bedroom without it.Ē
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