Thursday, March 7, 2013

The Queen is 21...

My daughter turned 21 on Monday.  We headed up to Boulder, picked her and her brother up for her birthday dinner.  It is a rare time that we all get to be together and I have to count my blessings...these kids of mine do love each other...

When the kids were little, I made each kid a birthday crown and they wore it for a picture.  For some reason, I had to make one for the Queen...it was a sweet reminder of days gone by...

We headed to Walnut brewery in Boulder.  Christie was thinking she wanted to go to the Nepalese restaurant but didn't want to listen to her brothers complain about the food.  I encouraged her to pick whatever restaurant she wanted but she caved when they started to talk about the after effects they thought they would have after eating at that restaurant...

We sat down and ordered drinks.  Jim ordered a dark beer, ordered me the beer I always drink...and the boys ordered the customary Doctor Peppers.  The waitress turned to the Queen and asked her what she wanted to drink...silence fell over the table and she said, "I'll have a beer...Dad, what kind of beer would I like?"  Jim, in his customary cool style, told the waitress to bring her some samples of beer he thought she would like and she could choose.   She picked the same one I was drinking and sipped it through the meal.  The boys were mesmerized at how she was having a beer with us and it was no big deal.  We ate our dinner and talked about life at college and how it was to be 21, how nothing has changed really and how she really needs to get ready for her spring break trip.  It was a wonderful night and so sweet to be together...

You see, my whole life changed the moment that I heard I was going to have a baby.  I took my last drag off of a cigarette in the back of Swedish hospital while I was on the phone calling for my pregnancy test results.  I didn't have a drink of alcohol and I gave up sweet-n-low.  I began to understand what it meant to be responsible for another human being.  I thought I had it down...

Then, she was born and I felt as though I could understand a little bit of what God's love is for us...to understand immediately that I would lay my life down for her, change everything plan I had if it meant being with her and wanting to spend every moment looking at her.  Honestly, I think Jim and I worshiped her for the first few months.  We were stunned with the gift that was given to us to care for and try to raise into a compassionate, kind human being.

Through the years, this kid has taught me so much.  In second grade, when she wasn't invited to a party that all the other girls in her class were, she took it with grace and mercy.  I was devastated and called the mother to let her know that I could not believe she would leave my kid out and my Christie calmed me down and told me that it was okay...that she was fine and she would be okay.  I didn't believe her but she was just fine.

I watched her through the years as she stuck to her beliefs and her plans.  She worked hard, played hard and was almost rigid in what she believed.  If she wanted to learn the french horn, she did,  to be the drum major in high school, teach herself the guitar, become fluent in Spanish .. all that too.  If she wanted to be on the soccer team, or the swim team or run cross country...she did it.  She just kept plugging along and made her way.  When she decided to paint a picture for her friend, she planned it out and did it and I cannot tell you how beautiful it is.

My Christie Lou, words cannot express how lucky I feel to be your mom, to have spent time watching you grow, change and learn...your life changed my life for the better and I would not be the person I am without your influence.  

May you have many more years of learning, loving and being the most amazing girl..may your compassion, grace and sense of what is good, right and holy keep you doing what you love to do.

I know you are going to change the world...because you have changed my world!

I love you, 

We'll tawk tomorrow,
I love you all,


Elizabeth said...

Happy Birthday to your beautiful daughter. And what beautiful words you've written about her and your husband -- I loved hearing how you practically worshiped her when she was born! I loved the photo of your three -- so beautiful.

Ms. Moon said...

Happy birthday to that Queen of yours! God, Terry. I can't believe she's 21 now.
You have done a wonderful job being her mother. Absolutely the best.
I love you all.