“I can tell.”

She’s so smart, our girl. She can come in to the living room after bedtime and ask us questions about the nature of sand and waves–deep, serious, questions that her teacher could not answer in the moment our daughter posed them in class… and she can confide.

“I’m a little worried, because I can tell that my friends have a new friend to replace me. I can tell, Mom. I don’t think they’re going to care about me when I’m gone.”

What do you do, exactly, when your 9-year-old daughter can encapsulate, with eloquence and clarity, the sum of nearly all my fears?

“People keep going, honey. They make new friends, but that doesn’t mean you’re not there. You’re just not in front of them.”

As I said to my husband: we are so lucky to have a child who can sense, who can put words to her feelings and then actually use her voice to express them, so that we can help her.

Or so that she can help us.

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