I have loved the number 8 since, well, I was 8.
My mom told me around that time how much she had loved being 8 years old. For some reason she remembered it being a particularly good year. I remember thinking that of course the same should be true for me, being her daughter and all. I was in third grade and then fourth during the time I was 8, and I really lived it up. I think that summer was the first time I ever went to summer camp. The first time a boy ever told me he liked me was also while I was 8... Jacob held his notebook up in front of his face while sitting across the table from me with his elementary school handwriting saying, "It is true. I like you." I was horribly embarrassed, of course, and even though I thought he was cute, I ignored him (some things never change, I suppose!). Besides, I really had my eye on the older brother of a friend in my neighborhood anyway, who was in sixth grade. Jacob eventually moved on to Bianca who was in a different class and wore very short jean skirts. I digress.
One time in Sunday School when I was 8 I brought up a serious concern with my teacher. I wanted to know what age we were going to be in heaven. I said that if I could choose, I would for sure choose to be 8, because I couldn't imagine having any more fun at any other age. To be younger was nonsense. If I were older, I'd be boring and have less energy. I would be laying out by the Heavenly pool instead of jumping in and playing Marco Polo. My teacher said something like, "I don't know that we'll be any age in heaven, I don't think it will matter there." But I knew better. If God knew what He was doing, He'd make me 8 again the second I got there.
I have worn the number 8 on my sports jerseys since I was allowed to choose, I think since I started high school. My current soccer team knows that I always grab that number, but once in awhile a new girl joins the team and beats me to the punch. I wear #18 rather forlornly and commit to beating her to the field the next weekend to reclaim my shirt.
Earlier this year I had wanted to plan a party or something for this greatest of dates, 08-08-08. Then I realized that today would be the first day of the Summer Olympics. You can hardly ask for more than that. I love the Olympics, and I can't tell you how many times growing up these games inspired me, my siblings, and friends to create our own versions. We were especially obsessed, as little girls are, with gymnastics and figure skating. I'm sorry to say that there's no video recording of our choreographed rollerskating routine to Phantom of the Opera music on our neighbor's smoothly paved driveway. We did triple axels and everything.
Anyway, today is a great day: it's Friday, it's very sunny out, we'll watch the opening ceremony of the Olympics tonight, and... my good friends and old neighbors Karen and Darren just welcomed their baby girl, Carly Skye, to the world this morning. Her birthday is 08-08-08. I'm jealous of her... but mostly just excited to meet her. I'm heading to the hospital this very minute to hold my very first newborn.
8 is great.