Right now I am constantly looking at DD1. Because when I saw her performing on stage - confident, beautiful, graceful, fun, serious - I can see a glimpse of who she will be when she is older. Not what she will be doing, but snippets of what she will be like.
I will start by saying that when my daughter is in her stage makeup? She is gorgeous. Which I know is a weird thing to think when she is 12 and I don't want her to grow up so quickly and I totally mock the Toddler and Tiaras crowd. I always think she's a pretty girl, I'm her mom. Realistically I know (read: hope) that she won't wear as much makeup in real life as she does on stage, but I can see what it does for her eyes and how it shows off the fullness of her lips (which I would love to have, alas - she did not get them from me) and I know she'll wear makeup when she's older like we all do... and having a glimpse of that is kind of cool. It's probably cool to me because it is temporary. I'm sure later I'll wish I could see her fresh faced again and wish she didn't always wear makeup. It seems there is no pleasing a mom!
There is a "look" my daughter does... she's been doing it since she was tiny tiny tiny, and to me it is so very "her". When I remember her being little, this is one of those "looks" that I see. She looks up through the tops of her eyes, but it isn't an eye roll. It's one of her thinking looks - she used to do it a lot when she was talking or telling a story, now I only see it occasionally when she's talking about friends or school. She does it when she dances, and I'm so glad she does. Because for a fraction of a split second she is my little girl again. She has no idea she does it, it is one of those completely unconscious moves that one does that makes them unique. It makes me smile.
When I watch her dance I see that she isn't always in the right place at the right time, but she makes adjustments quickly.
When I watch her dance I see her being in front of people doing something very personal that could be judged, and she is comfortable there.
When I watch her dance I see that she is willing to work hard and doing so brings her joy.
When I watch her dance I can see that she is growing up, but still retains things that make her "DD1". Things that are a part of who she will always be no matter what.
I look at her...
My amazing daughter.
I love you more than you will ever know.