Monday, March 28, 2011

How is it possible that she is 17 today?

"The ache for home lives in all of us, the safe place where we can go as we are and not be questioned." —Maya Angelou

She is our safe place. Not just mine, not just her dad's and her brother's, but all of us. She takes us as we are, she laughs at our quirks, delight in the musical sound of it, and we feel that we are seen fully and loved just exactly as we are. This is her gift. She is our gift. And my wish for her, on this her seventeenth birthday, which she is spending a world away in South Africa, teaching children who have very little in the way of material possessions, children who she says have climbed inside her heart, my wish for her on this day is that the world will mirror for her all that she is—a girl whose love allows for our failings, who is willing always to see the best of who we are, whose gentle laughter heals our human aches and makes us feel that we are home. God bless you, sweetheart, and bring you home safe. We love you so much. Happy birthday.


  1. I think she's climbed into all of our hearts, actually. Happy birthday to your gorgeous, soulful daughter, and happy birth day to you --

  2. Happy Birthday to your sweet girl. I have to agree with Elizabeth, she has climbed into my heart as well.

  3. I remember 17 fondly - graduating high school, starting college, happy, happy, happy - but here is your treasure giving and sharing her gifts with others so far from home. Splendid! Happy birthday.

  4. What a gift she has! What a gift she is to this world! Happy birthday to her, and to you, her mother.

  5. You make me miss my own gift so very much. Happy Birthday to your beauty. Cherish every moment.

  6. hey; she didnt fall far from the oak tree! bless YOU angella, and her father!

  7. what a beauty...
    Happy Birthday to you both!

  8. A memory she will treasure, your beautiful words and your love. Happy Birthday to you all. xo

  9. Happy Birthday - to the beautiful daughter of my beautiful friend!!
    Sending love ~

  10. The mirror of her love and all that she is, is not limited to this world but extends beyond it......Happy birthday blessed girl.....God bless you all.

  11. Elizabeth, that means a lot. Thank you, and love.

    Katrina, it's so nice to see you! thanks for opening your heart to my girl.

    A, sometimes her radiance blinds me. but i think that is true of all our children. thank you for being here.

    Gary, you may interested to know she has been musing this week that perhaps she might like to teach. One of the chaperones on the trip was her Pre-K teacher, who then left her K-8 school and went to teach kindergarten at the k-12 school my daughter attends now. So she is teaching arts with her former Pre-K teacher at her side, and she is finding it a wonderful experience. She says she watches her with the kids and remembers clearly when she applied the same gentle coaching to her! It is a fond memory. She seems to be having an excellent experience. I hope you see this. I think you will understand what this two week period has been like for her best of all.

    Ms. Moon, thanks for the birthday wishes, because yes, i was working pretty hard on that day 17 years ago! LOL

    Tess, I will cherish. Bless you.

    Susan t, you are very kind. I truly think she came into this world the way she is. we are merely shepherds.

    handandspirit, thank you, dear one.

    Marylinn, thank you. She is making rich memories indeed.

    Gabriele, you have such a loving spirit. Thank you, friend.

    Bruce, this means so, so much, especially the "God bless you all." God bless you, too, dear brother. With love.

  12. Happy birthday to your daughter! I don't know her personally, but, from your blog, she just seems like such a wonderful person. Good health and all the best to her!

  13. Thank you, Olga! I will pass on the good wishes.

  14. Happy, happy Birthday to your sweet angel daughter. May she always know kindness while she sheds her light around the world. And happy birth day to you, dear momma. For 17 years ago today, you were working very hard to bring this beauty into the world. Thank you for that:)