As my baby I loved dressing you up, caring for you, holding you close. I so wanted to do everything right, yet it was all so new. You were such a compliant child. You took great joy in helping me wherever you could. You were born a thinker. You loved to help me bake in the kitchen... donning the cutest little aprons that were way too big on you. Now you take over my the kitchen....
You loved to play dress up and wore your way-too-big princess shoes all around the house... clanking away, dancing and singing songs.
Somehow... I'm not exactly sure when... or how... you grew up. I look at you now. You're 13. Those princess shoes couldn't even fit on your hands now. I'm a bit weepy today... and yet so happy. I'm thinking of how the years have flown by. I always heard they would... yet in the midst of it, that's hard to believe. They really do. I won't walk into your room and catch you using bright blue kid's toothpaste as lotion all over your body. Now you wear perfume and do your own hair. The mismatched outfits that you were so proud of as a little girl have been replaced with carefully thought out ensambles in which you look beautiful in. You don't hide behind a chair in my room to go to the bathroom or color with a sharpie all over my carpet floor. You don't cut up my curtains with your kid's scissors or dump out all of the toys in the toy chest so you can lay down in it. You don't say "bye bye poo poo... as you flush the potty anymore. Little girl...you've grown up.
I remember being 13. I remember the excitement of growing up yet being so frustrated in my own skin. I remember my body changing and not liking it. I remember not being able to sort out my emotions which were on the fiercest of roller coasters... so happy then so sad or mad a few minutes later. I see some of the same battles going on inside of you. Life is hard. You're a perfectionist and feel "less than" if you can't get things just right. Although it's a wonderful thing to try your best, you'll need to learn that your best IS good enough. Do your best, give glory to God and learn what you can when you fall down or mess something up. Get up, try again. You've got this girl. I'm so proud of you. I always will be.
You are a people pleaser. You love people. You see the best in them. You want to be looked up to and admired. You have an amazing God-given gift. People, even those you don't know, are drawn to you. I love how you put people at ease. You're compassionate and sympathize with others. You feel... deep. All of this sets the perfect stage, though, for falling hard when someone hurts you. Oh little one... you'll be hurt in this life. It's inevitable. I hate seeing you hurting. A Momma will never find joy in their child's hurting heart. I so want to walk through these hurts with you. I am here for you to talk to. About anything... I think you know that. I love our open communication and how we do talk about so many different things with ease. Yet I know you may not always want to talk to me. We're starting to discover that even now. I pray you'll have people in your life that will be honest with you... that you'll have a heart to hear things that will be hard to hear. I want you to have mentors and encouragers in your life and that His voice will be the one you hear above all. I pray that you'll be able to discipher between what's truth and what's a lie. That you'll understand and speak truth with authority. I pray that your feet will remain on the solid rock and that you'll come to know Jesus in deeper and deeper ways. I love your heart, little one. I love the way you're navigating the disappointments and joys in life. I love how you desire to read your Bible and want to know all you can. I love how you want answers to life's questions and how you're not afraid to ask them. You're making so many right choices. You've got a good head on your shoulders.
You are kind. You are creative. You're in inventor. You're a scientist. You're full of love and place a lot of value on people and relationships. You want to help the less fortunate and your heart breaks for hurting people. You wish you had more resources to help every ministry or organization you hear about. You're a rescuer. You can't understand why anyone could hurt another person in the terrible ways they do nowadays. You're growing up in such a beautiful way. Watching you walk in this world that's unfolding before you has been a real blessing... bringing me so much joy. You are growing up so quickly and already speak of university but I'm in no hurry for that to happen, but I do pray that you'll keep your feet on the path of life no matter where the Lord leads you. I'm so proud of you, Nummers, for the grace you're giving us through the many mistakes that we make while learning to parent each new stage. You're a treasure, Brooke Lynn.
Happy 13th Birthday, Beauty!