“Mama, do I know more things now?”

That’s my daughter who just turned 4 asking when we were at the dinner table. I didn’t get what she meant at first. In a split second I put pieces together then I totally understood what she meant.

She’s been very excited about turning 4. Well, I guess it’s normal. You hardly remember anything when you were three, right. Almost everyday in the past month she asked me ‘am I four yet?’, which I thought was quite interesting. I didn’t quite get why she seemed to be in a hurry to turn four. I thought it’s the whole birthday presents, cakes and things, but those were not it; she was always so clueless whenever people asked what presents she wanted.

Then I remember conversations, lots of them, between my daughter and my son, or when they were playing with friends. The elements of ‘you are only 3, wait until you get bigger’, or ‘you are not old enough’ kept coming up. And I even remember myself saying something along the line of, ‘look, it’s sometimes good to listen to your brother, because for some things, he does know more than you.’ We did not mean to undermine her or anything like that. Concerns about her safety was usually the drive behind it.

Maybe she had it in her mind that the moment she turned four, things would be miraculously different for her. That over night during her big sleep a fairy would come to her and bless her with all these knowledge (and wisdom), so that when she was awake on her birthday morning, she became a new girl. A big girl of four who totally knew more than her 3 years old self. This ‘new’ girl who would be able to write, read, riding a bike, or even pronounce things properly. Over night.

Wouldn’t that be great for all of us, if we were granted things we wish we could have when we wake up every birthday morning. Non material things. Only things like knowledge, skills, wisdom and understanding, or just a better sense of direction. You wake up one birthday morning, then BAM! you totally know which direction is North, for example.

To my lovely daughter, I know more things and think about more things because you are you, so I thank you. Happy 4th birthday, my sweet.

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