Wednesday, October 12, 2011

To My Daughter on Her Birthday

My Dearest Taylor,

Today is your birthday! Yes, you are 12 on the 12th and if your mood this morning was any indication, you're really excited about finally reaching this new milestone. I truly could not be more thrilled to see unabashed joy in your face this morning, sweetheart, as you deserve nothing but the best today.

Age 11 was interesting and challenging on so many levels. Not only are you growing up (much too quickly, I might add) but you have also mourned the loss of a beloved pet and a sibling you weren't able to meet in person since you last blew out candles atop a sugary cake. By all accounts, this has been a difficult year for our family but you, my darling, have made even the darkest days bright.

Twelve years ago I held a beautiful baby with a ton of jet black hair and realized - in an instant - that life as I knew it was over. I had no idea it was possible to fall completely in love with a tiny bundle so quickly but you had me in a split second. Though I had no idea what I was doing (and still don't at times), you were (and are) my pride and joy. There is nothing I wouldn't (and won't) do for you.

But now you're growing up and the reigns have been loosened a bit over the last year. You spend a lot of time with a sweet group of girlfriends (and you're such a good friend it blows me away) and don't want to hang out with me nearly as much as you used to. But at the same time, we have the most amazing conversations these days and you continue to blow me away with your sense of humor and compassion. I pray all the time that you'll always retain a love for the unusual, the less traveled path and your quirky sense of style.

You are growing into your own person and, quite frankly, you're turning out to be a really amazing young lady. But make no mistake, my precious girl, you're still my baby. And I'm still your mom. I will always be here when you need me and even on those occasions when you don't think you do...but I know better.

There is no greater responsibility in my life than being your mom and that's why I pray every day I won't mess it up. :-)

Know, sweet girl, that you are the apple of my eye and all those times you think I'm hanging on too tightly, it's still just a fraction of how desperately I want to hold and protect you from this world. Because that's simply not a possibility, my greatest goal for you is to know that no matter what happens, there is One you can turn to at any time. One who will never leave or forsake you. One who has amazing and unexplainable plans for your life.

And - praise Jesus - you do know, love and trust Him.

You, Miss Taylor, challenge me every day to be a better person, have an uncanny ability to strip any amount of pretense from a conversation and see the good in any and everyone at all times. I love those things about you and know that God alone instilled those qualities in you because there is no way you got them from me. You are my greatest joy, darling, and I cannot wait to see what year 12 brings.



Ang said...

Way to make me cry! :) You are a fantastic mom, and I'm proud to know you & call you Friend.

Gauger Family said...

Aww, she's so grown up! Happy Bday!

PW said...

"have an uncanny ability to strip any amount of pretense from a conversation and see the good in any and everyone at all times"

RW you should be proud, your best traits carried on.