I got a card from my not-so-secret pal a few weeks back. She’s eleven, blonde-ish, and creeping up on me height-wise. She lives in the bedroom above mine. As far as secret-pal duties go, she favors sneaking up on me when I’m working and giving me an impressively firm shoulder rub. She likes to bring me coffee when I haven’t asked for it, and drop handfuls of Skittles or sour Starburst on my desk whenever she’s in possession of a bag.
Tera’s card says “Guess who?” on the front. Two plump, rounded-faced critters — a bunny and a cat? — sit together on a snowy park bench singing from a shared music book. The scene is centered within a snow globe. When opened, the card reads,
It’s time we had
a little meeting
‘Cause I sent you
a little greeting
And now I think
you ought to know
Who was behind
that secret “hello!”
Your secret pal is Tera Woodward
A sweet sentiment. But it doesn’t hold a candle to what she wrote beside it:
Your the one I the most.
I love u so much.
And thank you for picking me!
“Thank you for picking me” . . . Ah, little girl, it wasn’t like that. I saw those curly blond curls on that tiny little head, and a pair of mischievous green eyes smiling up at me, and I wanted you, yes … but you were picked for me from the beginning of time. Choice had nothing to do with it — you were my gift.
I’ve thought about her card, and her words, a dozen times since she grinned and handed me her offering. How lovely to be loved, to be thanked. How lovely to have a child overlook the time-outs, the corrections, the denials we have to mete out now and then.
It inspired me to send up a secret pal message to my Father this morning:
You’re the one I the most.
I love You so much.
And thank You for picking me!