Have I mentioned lately how much I love you? I love that you think of other people and do things without expecting anything in return. I love that you have a good heart and wish you would not be so self conscious about showing it. I love that you can make people laugh and even when you can’t find the good in a situation, can find a way to keep moving. I love that you are willing to try new things and are finally realizing that just because you’ve always done something a certain way, doesn’t mean it’s the only way. I love that you are fearless in the face of the unknown, that you stand up for your family, and that you keep going after the things you think are important. You are emphatic, boisterous, temperamental, bold, energetic, and passionate, and I love you.
Have I told you how proud I am of the amazing mother you’ve become? You spent years trying to convince yourself and the world that you didn’t want kids…I knew you were just terrified of having someone be dependent upon you. But you inherited a teenage stepson who trusts you enough to tell you things he won’t tell his dad. And now there’s T, who is fearless and smart and curious and funny and loud and happy and so very loved. You have great instincts, giving guidance when it’s needed but knowing that it’s okay for them to explore the world and discover their own paths, on their own terms and in their own time. There is no greater gift you can give them, and you are amazing.
Have I reminded you how beautiful you are? I don’t care that you haven’t worn a bikini in five years, or that you are self-conscious about those gray hairs starting to creep in or those lines that are starting to appear around your eyes. Those things are superficial and don’t change who you are inside. You are smart and funny and sexy, self-confident and loyal, with infectious enthusiasm and a great smile, and you are so beautiful.
You know I worry about you, there is always so much to do, places to be, other people with neeeds and wants that tend to trump your own. Every year you feel like you’re falling further behind…what, exactly? It’s life, not a race. I want your days to be a search for treasure, not tests. This year, I challenge you to find that treasure. Try something you’ve always wanted but never found the time. Master a a new skill. Jump head first into something you’ve always feared, and make it your own. You are an amazing woman, and you deserve this gift to yourself, the gift of a full and rewarding life. Happy birthday.