Ten years ago you were born. A whole decade.
Ten years ago my greatest dream came true. The nurse placed sweet little baby you in my arms and I just stared at your face. I could have never imagined the great kid you would be now, ten years later.
This might sound strange, but I just really like you. You are fun to hang out with and we have great talks when we find time to be together just the two of us.
You are still my super responsible one. You follow rules. You put in the work necessary to complete projects. That isn’t to say you don’t test the boundaries every now and then. But I have loved watching you for these ten years as you tried new things with bravery and a quiet strength.
You are not one who loves the limelight. You don’t seek attention. You prefer to quietly go about your business in your own way. And yet, there are times when you shine and its extra beautiful. For example, this summer in soccer you seemed to just step up and be a leader. You worked extremely hard and learned so much and all of a sudden you were this force to be reckoned with on the field. So many times your Dad and I would be sitting on the sidelines with goofy grins on our faces because it was so much fun to watch you do your thing.
You are the caretaker. You love young children. You love volunteering in the church nursery. Your face lights up and your demeanor changes when you are in the presence of little ones. And they love you for it. You are sweet and kind and attentive.
This year at school you have had a great year. I love the way you have put yourself out there and made some new friends. You are a good student, but you also work very hard. Some things are easy for you, others are more challenging. But you always try.
Sometimes you amaze me with your maturity, and then other times I am reminded that you are still a young girl. I know you have so many big steps ahead of you, and yet you have handled each challenge in your life with calm grace. That gives me great hope not just for the rest of your childhood, but also for you as a young woman.
You are creative and innovative and it shows in your amazing Lego creations. Legos are still your favorite thing. You also love making bracelets and necklaces, attending Gems at our church, swimming, playing games, soccer, babysitting little ones, and occasionally cooking a meal. The highlight of your summer was finally seeing your favorite animal, the polar bear.
Every time I let you go a little bit more I stand ready to catch you – but I seldom need to. You take off slowly and carefully, but you always fly steady and smooth. A good word to describe you would be calm. Even so, I think I’ll stand here waiting to catch you just in case.
We celebrate you today. We’ve had you for a whole decade and it’s been easily the best decade of my life. I will always be better for having spent these 10 years with you.
You are quiet, serene and calm. You are deep, devoted and faithful. And I can see how God has begun writing a beautiful story through your tender heart.
Lean into that story, Reagan girl. Let His hand write on the pages of your life. Let His heart be the one you trust. Let His wisdom be the place you turn. Train your ears to hear His voice. Open your eyes to see His hand.
And know this, I love you. I love you more than I can say. I love you more than 10,000 birthday letters can convey. I love you more than words can frame. I love you unquestionably, unashamedly, unconditionally. Maybe someday when you hold your baby, you will know.
But even all that is the tiniest glimpse of the love God has for you. He loves you when you are easy to love. He loves you still when you are not so easy to love. His love knows no limits, no distance, no choice that it cannot still reach you. The day you were born I placed you solidly in those hands – those nail-pierced hands – that formed you, that bled for you, that stretched out wide for you. I let go more and more each day believing it is those hands that will catch you even when I cannot.
In every decade of your life, my prayer is that you will look back and see His love for you.
You are so very loved.