The night before I turned twenty, I had all the teenage angst. I pondered life from the small room I had on first floor in the dorm where I’d also lived two years before during my freshman year of college. I can see the comforter and my peach colored sheets, as I remember sitting there and putting into words all of my emotions about leaving my teen years. Sentimentality and questions were predominant in the lines I filled with my handwritten thoughts.
Tonight I sit here again, pondering the end of the teen years and all that encompasses. My oldest will be twenty when we all get up in the morning, as she was born at 3:32 a.m.
Twenty. How can that be possible, when I can still feel nearly everything I felt the night before I turned twenty?
This is the decade when she will grow by leaps and bounds into whom she will be. She will finish her education and choose a career. She will meet all kinds of interesting people and possibly even find someone to share the rest of her life with in this next decade. She will do more than dream in this next decade–she will make things happen.
And that is mind-boggling.
I don’t have all the fancy words tonight that I did over twenty-something years ago. I won’t jot the thoughts I do have down with pen and paper.
Instead, I sit quietly and give thanks for every one of the past twenty years–each minute of every single day. Even the hard ones.
This night twenty years ago when I arrived at the hospital, my doctor met me there. The nurses had checked my blood pressure in the pre-admission room. They expressed concern to Dr. B that my blood pressure was up just a little bit.
“Of course it is,” he said, in a “duh” tone of voice. “She’s about to have a baby. About to become a Mama.”
There have been many moments since that night when “being a Mama” has raised my blood pressure just a little bit.
And I wouldn’t change a single thing.
In the hours after my girl was born, people gathered close. People who were anxiously awaiting her arrival and who have loved her ever since.
Every minute of every day since the moment she took her first breath, she has been loved.
I think I hold on to those two things tonight, and I want her to hold these close to her heart as well.
There will be hard moments in this life–hard days, even hard seasons. Times that will raise your blood pressure. There’s no getting around that. But when those moments come, and they WILL, know this–you are loved.
Every moment. Of everyday.
May that love carry you in its arms through the hard times and carry you on its shoulders in times of joy.
And may this next decade find joy chasing you down and tackling you. All the days.
Love to all.
And happy birthday, baby girl!