Never Grow Up

Never Grow Up

Try and stay little forever
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Stay like you are -- never grow up. You are starting to become who you are destined to be, and I couldn't be prouder watching it and cherishing each moment. I just pray it would all slow down. I know it is selfish of me to ask, but I want you to stay little forever. Innocent, free, young. I wish you no stress or worry or hardship bigger than learning to tie your shoes, than coloring outside the lines, than the size of the cookie you get after dinner. I love you, and my message to you is to never grow up.

I remember the first time you wrapped your tiny hand around my finger, the first time your laughter filled my ears and the first time I held you tight. I remember.

Because as you grow up, I grow old.

My only hope for you is for life to be simple. For your life to be easy, easier than mine, easy and happy and beautiful, just like you. I wish I could pause it all here for you in childhood where there's no stress, no heartbreak, no struggle. Where there is no judgment, no doubt, no questioning. But I also want you to know that when those times come, I will be here. I will be your rock, your support system, your number one fan. I'll cheer you on as you shine and be watching you every step of the way.

Because as you grow up, I grow old.

There's just so much you don't know yet, you haven't experienced yet, and you haven't gone through yet. And some of it I hope you never have to. But some of it will also make you who you are destined to be, will change your life in unimaginable ways, and will help you be yourself on this twisting road that's called life. It will be those times that start to define you. It will be those times that you begin to find pieces of yourself you never knew you had. It will be in those times that you grow up without ever realizing it.

Because as you grow up, I grow old.

So my plea to you is this: Never grow up. And when you do, I hope you remember. I hope you remember the first time your finger gets squeezed by the tiniest hand you've ever seen. I hope you remember the first time your ears ring after the silliest laugh you've ever heard. I hope you remember the first time you hold something so gently and so tightly that nothing could ever be wrong in the world. I hope you remember.

Because once you are growing old, you've already grown up.

Cover Image Credit: Maddi Burns

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What Rescuing a Dog Taught Me About My Future

She was a real pain to begin with, but I wouldn't give her up for the world now.

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My first dog came from a breeder to us when he was just a puppy. I was in third grade so we were both young together. I remember stepping off of the bus and seeing him curled up in my mom's arms. His breed, a Cavalier King Charles, is a highly sought after dog for their small size and beautiful markings. However, dog breeding can lead to medical complications down the line. Heart murmurs are very frequent as cavaliers get older. When he turned 9 years old, they were already detecting the beginning of a heart murmur in him. But my second dog didn't come to us in quite the same way.

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