I don't know if it is true for boys but for girls the right of passage as one enters the realm of double digits is important. Turning 10 is not as important as say turning 16 or 18 or 21. It might not be AS important but to a girl who has had nine birthdays the tenth birthday is one to remember.
I can remember my own. It was a warm November day, one that would be called Indian Summer by TV weather reporters or readers of the Farmers Almanac or Yankee.
I wore a long-sleeved striped v-neck sweater on a day that was filled with the smell of autumn brought on by wind gusts that travelled across a former corn field that was now home to a real estate development that displaced numerous four-legged creatures while creating a forbidden playground for me and my brothers.
I stood beneath the maple trees in the front yard of our rented house glowing in my 10 year old skin as I posed with my new 10 speed bicycle while my dad snapped a picture with the Polaroid camera.
Immortalized forever. 10!
It was a glorious red bicycle that would carry me to the pool and the houses of friends. It was 1979.
Everything about the bike was perfect. It was red and it had the curled handle bars and gears that would make climbing the hill to the pool easier and coming down the same hill faster and more exciting than the purple banana seat bike I once thought was so cool.
I was tall for 10 and it wouldn't be long before I was trailing nervously behind my mom as she bought me my first bra at Montgomery Ward or Penney's at Miracle Lane Shopping Center.
Now my own daughter is turning 10.
Francesca was born just before 4 o'clock in the afternoon on a cold January day. A dusting of snow blew about on the dry parking lot I could see from my window at the hospital and reminded me of powdered sugar.
On January 9 Francesca will turn 10.