Seventeen years ago cute girl, you surprised us a few weeks early right into this world.
Shortly after you were born, I sat singing “You are my sunshine” over and over again in the hospital.
As I sang while nursing you, I noticed the rhythm of your swallow matched the beat of my song.
Immediately I determined you were a musical prodigy, until I realized it wasn’t you following the lead of my simple song . . .
but rather my voice already following you.
From the very first moment we met, you’ve taught me to follow your pace.
As you grew a little older, you pushed my every-single-last-button.
When I said sit, you stood.
When I said come here, you’d race there.
And when I tried to snuggle up all cozy with you just before bedtime, you’d almost kick me out of the room.
There were days we struggled.
We struggled through every single spelling test.
We struggled through one-hundred-too-many hours of homework.
And goodness, we struggled through at least 8703 time-out sessions on that big black round rug in the foyer that used to sit by the front door.
But somewhere along the way you just turned into this most amazing girl.
You idolized your big brother, giving him a quiet confidence he never would have known without you.
You mothered your baby sister, pointing out to her the guard rails, always teaching her to follow your lead.
You adored your dad, subtly navigating each and every personality around you.
You quickly mimicked the most important things you watched. If someone opened a door showing kindness, you knew that was a trait to follow.
If someone picked up a piece of trash, you quickly followed their lead and did the same.
If there was ever a way to better leave a space that you were in, you (almost?) always took the opportunity to make something just a little bit better because you’d been there.
You simply started looking for opportunities to make things better around you.
And for me . . . goodness, you have taught me all the things.
You’ve taught me to be patient.
You’ve taught me to fight for confidence.
You’ve taught me to remember that I really am the boss. 🙂 (Even though we all know most of the time you’ve been the boss all the way.)
And you’ve taught me to simply adore you.
Thank you sweet girl for being the hidden-and-ever-so-quiet leader that you always are.
Thank you for teaching me that fighting for what you want sometimes really does matter.
Thank you for teaching me that every-single-person but very few things have true value.
From the very beginning I’ve followed your lead, watching you never settle to be anything less than the girl God created you to be.
Praying the most beautiful day for you today. And so very thankful God gave me you, just a few quietly-hummed-you-are-my-sunshine lines ago.
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