If ever there was a kid who deserved some space, it's this one — our first-born.
Even on the cusp of her tween years, there was never a complaint about sharing a room with her much younger sister so the baby could have a nursery.
A few months ago, that nursery and our family underwent a big change when we took the crib down for the last time.
Still, she waited patiently to hear the words, "It's time for you to have your own room."
I remember hearing them myself and how free they made me feel. After years of sharing a room with my younger sister, I craved solitude. She does, too.
This past weekend, the changeover finally started. We painted the walls (a very bright colour, but it suits her) and put together the bed. She slept in it for the first time last night. Even though the room is otherwise empty, she was so happy to be there.
She is a memory keeper and a dreamer. If you write her a note, she will hold onto it. Mementos and gifts from special people are tucked away. Underneath her bed and piled on her desk, there are journals filled with elaborate drawings and heartfelt stories.
I stood in her new room today while she was at school. I took in the sight of all her treasures and the way they tell the story of who she is. I thought of the hope that went into creating her very first room — a space I filled for a girl I hadn't met.
The hope remains, but the story is no longer mine to imagine.
She's the writer now.
I'm the lucky reader.