I had like… three panels to stretch out to tell the same joke, but sometimes you remember an antiquated meme and you just have to do it to ’em.

It works, too, because I’m drawing this one in the quiet hours of Momo’s eighth birthday, and I am tired. Eight!! Guys, she’s eight now! Eight years, I have been her mother! Wild!

Because her birthday lines up with the school year, the years of her life have lined up to perfectly delineate certain phases. Seven was homeschooling, and being given a period of growing into each other and understanding each other during a time when children and parents usually begin to drift apart. And, now, eight – she’s going back to school (probably), and I’m gonna start to see her asserting her independence again after a year of living comfortably together, and it’s going to be… weird. Eight is going to be emotionally difficult, after the Seven we had.

Momo of the future reading this, I love you more and more every day, you little stinker. You challenge me to be a better person, for you. I know I don’t get it right – I have felt that acutely this year – but I love you like nothing else, and I always will. Happy birthday, baby.