A Letter to B On Her 18th Birthday~
You are 18 today – so grown up. This day, your birthday, is a day of celebration. After all, you’re not a little girl any longer. But, I have to tell you that on this joyous day for you, I’m feeling a little sad. I’m wondering if you won’t need me as much any more. I’m wondering if you’re happy to reach this milestone as a symbol of your independence from home, from family, from me.
As we sang “Happy Birthday” tonight. Our eyes met and I wonder if you saw that mine were teary. Could you feel my sadness? Did you notice? Did it show?
As I am reflecting on your 18 years, I could not be more proud of the young woman you are. Your strength and determination have carried you through each struggle you have faced. I admire how you’ve never given up, when I think I would have. I admire how hard you work at the goals you set for yourself. The early morning before school and weekend skating lessons and practices, dance classes, poms practices, the difficult academic course load, the late nights of homework and studying… I could go on and on. And with all of this, your character and your compassion for others shines through in all that you do. Your service to others is an example for us to follow. You are strong in your faith and your beliefs. You truly amaze me every day.
My dearest daughter, you were the first to teach me about unconditional love and how to be a mother. You have taught me to be patient, trusting, compassionate, resilient. I wonder if I would have learned these things if I were not chosen and blessed to be your mother.
So… B, on this, your 18th birthday, with the world at your feet, know that I love you with all of my heart.
Now… let’s eat cake!
Happy Birthday, B!