Since the day you were born, you’ve been teaching me about life. Yes I gave you life, but really, you gave me mine.
You nearly stopped my heart when I reached down and pulled you onto my chest the moment you took your first breath.
You nearly stopped my heart again when I saw you, with your bouncing curls looking down so lovingly at your newborn sister, and placing a kiss on her forehead – a promise that you would forever be her protector.
And yet again when you came downstairs in your semi formal dress, so beautiful you took my breath away. I looked at you and then I looked harder. I blinked and you were grown.
Just like that.
Fear has a way of creeping in right alongside reality. I worry that people will be cruel, that some will betray you, and others will break your heart. But they must. I worry that you will struggle, that you will feel pain and sadness, that you will learn some lessons the hard way. But you must.
You must grow and growing requires change, and pain, and heartache. But you will also thrive. Oh will you thrive! Because you have embraced who you are, you will succeed and you will be even more amazing as you open yourself to this world and to the love it has to give you in return.
Parenting is about celebrating the child you have and coming to understand the they are exactly the person they are supposed to be. And if you’re lucky, they might teach you to be who you were created to be. I am one of the lucky ones.
You are your own person, so unique, so steadfast, so incredible. And I realize now what I think I’ve always known, that you were never mine to keep. Instead, I was chosen to nurture and guide you, to raise you to love others, to love yourself, to be a helper in a world of hurting, to learn forgiveness, and to let you go.
You will discover what you have to offer this world and those around you will be better for knowing you.
I will remain your biggest cheerleader.