I Didn’t Know

Six years ago, I didn’t know.

I didn’t know that love so BIG and so STRONG could be so SPLIT.

I didn’t know that your newborn quiet would give way to the best belly laughs I’d ever heard, edged by the best baby mowhawk that ever was.

I didn’t know how swiftly and smoothly and (almost) unnoticed by me you’d wisp from babyhood to toddlerhood and right into big-kid-hood.

I didn’t know how intensely you’d love and anger and sadden.

And just how deeply I’d feel each and every one of these HeartTugs shoulder-to-shoulder with you.

I didn’t know how far I’d reach to keep lacing fingers with you.

Or that your eyes would continue to tell me everything.

Or that you’d still fit neatly in my lap, curled at the crook of my neck, just like you did when “small” and “little” weren’t considered insults.

This cake has a brownie layer. Wouldn’t you lick every last crumb, too?

I didn’t know how very strong you’d be.

Strong physically and minded and willed, the very best kinds.

But what I really didn’t know is how full I would feel watching you, become You.

Your perfect birthday meant painting,

Pink chocolate chip pancakes,

“Midnight” bowling with your bestie,

Going out to the movies as a family,

And having brownies with every single meal.

I think, that you’ve got the right idea.

Happy 6th Birthday Chloe, my sweetest light.

iPhone Photo Phun

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  1. Oh happy birthday sweet girl! Enjoy the brownies. (And happy birth day to you to, Mama!)

  2. Oh, my goodness that first photo. And oh I didn’t know either.


  3. Beautiful. Your daughter is blessed to have you as her mother.

  4. This gives me chills. Stunning imagery and such a strong glimpse into your heart. Happy Birthday to your sweet girl and to you! I hope you both get to enjoy more cake and more memories!

  5. Congratulations dear friend on six years raising a precious gift … and enjoying her for all she is worth :)

  6. God didn’t want us to know until, right? It’s amazing what they teach us. I love this post. Just as beautiful as your sweet girl. Happy, HAPPY Birthday to her!! :-)

  7. Six years. Wow. My older one will be four this summer and I cannot even fathom how much more he will grow and change in the next two years. It is unbelievable and so miraculous. He, too, wears his heart on his sleeve. And I am right there feeling it all with him, just like you. Lovely. Happy birthday!

  8. Our kids really do teach us so much. Happy Birthday sweet girl!

  9. Oh how beautiful and how true. All the things we can never know until they are there. Happy Birthday to you and Chloe!

  10. I love it! I was smiling and tearing up at the same time. So true!

  11. Lynda M O says:

    Happy Sixth Birthday, Chloe, what an auspicious occasion turning six makes !~!

    May your day be filled with laughter, glitter, yummy treats and memories of the day with your family.

  12. Oh Galit, how sweet! And what a cutie she is! Amazing how fast they grow.
    Alyssa at Near Normalcy wrote a poem for her daughter’s sixth birthday – I think you would enjoy it.

  13. Happy Sixth Birthday to your daughter Chloe! What a wonderful and beautiful entry!

  14. Brownies with every single meal – I’m totally stealing that idea for my next birthday. Or my next Monday, because some days need extra brownies.

    Happy birthday to sweet Chloe! <3

  15. Happy 6th Birthday, Chloe.

    I love the first picture – of her looking at you, Galit. Gorgeous.

  16. Happy birthday to your daughter.

    I would love to have brownies with every meal.

  17. That first photo is just precious. The others too of course :)

  18. I love birthday posts the best!
    Happy Birthday Chloe!
    Your Mom’s Friend, m.

  19. Oh so sweet! Happy Birthday Chloe :-) I love the photo of the painted hands!

  20. Happy Birthday to your beautiful baby girl! She most definitely has the right idea – I am a huge brownie fan too. 😉 Sweet pictures!!

  21. I hope she has a wonderful birthday! What a special girl she is!

  22. Chloe!!! Happy Birthday you beautiful, FUN, WILD, SWEET soul sister!!! I love how your mom talks about you, how her love and sweet joy at having you colored her life like that INCREDIBLE Cake of yours. I adore hearing her rememeber you as you grew and how she’s watched you turn into the GIRL you are today, the woman you will be sooner than you think.

    You are blessed to have a mom like that, just Like I am blessed to be her friend. It is with happy tears that I wish you every candle wish come true this year and more happy memories than your heart can hold.

    Oh Galit, I loved this. Happy BIRTH day my dear sweet friend. xo

  23. Happy 6th Birthday Chloe! I love the “six words’ on the picture… think I might “borrow” that idea for my kids’ birthdays this year.

  24. I love best the ones where she’s looking at the cake and blowing out the candles. Her excitement is palpable.

  25. Life As Wife says:

    Happy birthday Chloe!!

  26. If this isn’t the best birthday present you could’ve given Chloe, I don’t know what is?! Your words were so pure and so heartfelt that I had goosebumps as I read them. That last picture where you captured the six words for a six year old…they will mean so much to her as she grows and looks back on them. You are a momma with so much love, Galit…so much love!! xo!! Happy Birthday to your girlie, Chloe!!!

  27. Oh this is just beautiful. What an amazing gift for you to share with your daughter. Beautiful xoxo

  28. Beautiful post. Just beautiful. I didn’t know either.

  29. Oh my gosh what a beautiful tribute to your daughter and what an amazing mother you are to her. And that first picture? I can hardly stand how perfectly the moment was captured.

  30. Happy birthday, Chloe! Your gorgeous words here mesh so well with the photos. The perfect complement, just like brownies with every meal. Delicious. xo

  31. So beautifully written!

    Sounds like the perfect birthday!

  32. Happy Birthday to your sweet big girl!

  33. Isn’t that the truth? The magic of watching our children Becoming. Growing into themselves. It’s the most amazing thing. Mazel tov to you, too, momma! You have nurtured this creativity. I long for the days where Tech Support didn’t protest the camera. You still have time. So enjoy these moments! 😉

    So much more Becoming to do!

  34. Oh a very happy birthday to Chloe! She is beautiful inside and out just like here mama!

  35. Happy birthday to your girl, Galit! What a wonderful way to remember it. I imagine how much fun it will be to look back on things like this when our kids are older and remember what they were like at different points in time. While they’ve developed definite personalities at this point, they’re still ever-changing, particularly their interests.

  36. I am totally teary right now! My oldest is turning 6 this year and I can’t believe it. So crazy how the time flies. I love your line, “But what I really didn’t know is how full I would feel watching you, become You.” It’s so true! It’s truly amazing to watch them become their own individuals.

  37. What a lovely birthday post! I don’t think any of us ever know, really. That’s what makes it joyful and painful in successive breaths. And even now that I know–it’s still hard to imagine what comes next.

  38. I already gushed about you on Twitter last night, but… Gorgeous, gorgeous. Happy Birthday to your daughter! You really are all things lovely, Galit.

  39. So beautifully put. I love how you captured your love for your daughter. Your words made me smile and sigh. :)

  40. LOVED that, once again. What dear words for you precious child. I know she seems so much older than that infant but wait in 10 more years when they head out the door with the car keys…alone.

  41. Happy Birthday to your beautiful girl! Love your words!

  42. Happy Happy Birthday! What a beautiful tribute to your daughter. I really love how you capture her essence. None of us really know, huh? I never knew my capacity to love. My heart swells as I watch my sons come into their own. Amazing. Thank you for sharing this!

  43. So sweet. And oh so fast.

    Happy birthday to your big girl. xo

  44. Beautiful! Happy birthday to her! I love her cake!

  45. Awww. Happy Birthday to your sweet girl. :)

  46. Happy birthday to your sweet girl. It does go way too fast…
    Hugs to you both.

  47. beautiful, sweet post Galit. Happy birthday to your girl. xo

  48. Oh, I love this. <3 Happy birthday to your sweet girl! (A girl after my own PINK heart, I may add. Hooray for girlie girls!)

    Also, *I* want pink chocolate chip pancakes, too!

  49. Happy birthday to Chloe! What a great message from her mama! Hope you all had a great day. :)

  50. So beautiful, as always! Happy Birthday to your sweet little 6 year old. 6 is a hard age for me. It is like the transition age from sweet little baby girl to elementary school big girl. It is so hard.

  51. Happy 6th birthday!!!

  52. Oh my goodness how lucky you are to have her…
    how lucky she is to have you.

    And this memory you captured.
    So perfect.

  53. happy birthday,what a beautiful tribute!!

  54. Sigh. Your relationship with your children makes me happy. I aspire to it.

  55. LOVE this my friend. happy Birthday to your sweet girl. xo

  56. She’s perfect. Happy Birthday Chloe.

  57. Oh, what a lovely birthday tribute! She is so adorable, Galit…and I see so much of you in her smile.

  58. She’s so lovely. None of us knew, before having kids, what it was really like. And it never ends; the love. It just grows and changes and continues…

    Happy Birthday to your baby!

  59. Aw. Happy birthday, sweet girl. I recently compared last year’s pictures to this year’s and I can’t believe how much my 7 y/o daughter’s face has changed. It’s too fast!

    Lovely tribute. And that cake looked luscious! :)

  60. That was so sweet! Happy Birthday to your daughter and this post just makes me that much more excited to watch my girls grow & take it all in.

  61. She’s 6?!
    Time flies by so fast.
    Happy Birthday Chloe! You are such a bright girl with so many gifts! I hope you day is amazing!

  62. So beautiful. The pictures and the words. As always you capture so much all at once. Happy birthday to your sweet sweet girl. And to you, mama. To you, as well. :)

  63. So beautiful.
    She is a doll.
    Sniff…stop growing.
    Don’t you wish we could control time?

  64. So poignant. There is no way to anticipate what an amazing experience it is to mother a child. xoxo

  65. Oh, this is sooo sweet! Happy Birthday, Chloe! She’s perfect! And her birthday sounds like it was a blast!

  66. Oh Galit, how you make me cry! I sit here and think of my daughter and how incredibly fast time goes. Seeing the 6 on Chloe’s cake….and realizing it was not that long ago that Maggie was celebrating the same….and now she will be 17!


    Enjoy each and every moment.

  67. You capture her and her birthday so beautifully! Love the part “I didn’t know…you’d still fit neatly in my lap, curled at the crook of my neck, just like you did when “small” and “little” weren’t considered insults.”

    Having just celebrated my daughter’s fourth, I totally cried reading this.

    Just beautiful, Galit.

  68. OH she is SO gorgeous! Happy bday Chloe. Love the idea of writing the year’s highlights on the photo. So clever.

  69. Sweet stuff, Galit! Happy Birthday, Chloe! Wishing her the best year, ever. I can’t wait to read all about it.

  70. Happy Birthday to your sweet 6 year old!
    Beautiful pictures.

  71. Brownies at every meal, she sounds like my kind of kid! They change so quickly and I love age 6 little girl.

  72. Happy birthday to your sweet girl! That sound like the Best. Birthday. Ever. And that first picture? Perfection.

  73. Oh, sweetness. Just the first picture alone left me with the warm fuzzies. And I knew this post would be brilliant (as your writing always is). Happy happy birthday to your adorable big girl!

  74. Six, SIX! Happy birthday to Chloe! Pink chocolate chip pancakes for a birthday? I’m coming to your house to celebrate mine. 😉

  75. Happy Birthday, sweet Miss Six!

    Another piece of gorgeous by you, Mama. What a gift. xx