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A Star's Gaze

You could see it in her eyes -- feel it with your own heart. I watched her cry with joy and clutch her hands to her chest. Rather than try to interfere, I kept my distance and watched. I didn't dare touch her. I couldn't bear to break the spell. My daughter has changed forever. She's in love.

Last night I took my almost eleven year old daughter to a Backstreet Boys' concert. I knew Caitlin thought she was "in love" with Nick and A.J., but last night, I saw it happen. That first stirring of what we always called "puppy love" has imbedded itself into her heart. I knew it was on the horizon, but it was still a surprise.

I know exactly how she felt inside. I was one of those squealing girls 25 years ago myself. Some things will never change, nor should they. When "The Boys" zoomed onto the stage riding hovering boogieboards
amid a cloud of smoke, I heard Caitlin scream with excitement. Right there, in the flesh, were her idols. She was actually breathing the same air as they were. When Nick spoke to the crowd, I felt the electricity escalate in the room full of 25,000 screaming girls. I ceased to exist for a while. In my daughter's mind it was only she and her dreams. When one of the band members would look in our direction, she was sure he was speaking directly to her.

Haven't all of us moms been there? With me it was Donny Osmond and David Cassidy. I knew I would meet them some day. I imagined all sorts of ways to be with my dreamboat. If I could just talk to him, somehow, someway, we would fall in love and marry. It was totally possible, if only in my mind.

This first step into love is both terrifying and wonderful, for both of us. It's not much different from those long-ago first words or first steps. It' s just as exciting. It's also scary for me, because I know that first love is a predecessor to that first heartbreak.

How I wish I could go through it for her. My heart already aches knowing the tears that will come all too soon.

Yesterday Caitlin was still my little girl. Now she's on her way to being a teenager.

All it takes is a star's gaze to change everything.

Crystal Cook

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Last Update: June 21, 2018