Lucky Thirteen

Dear Ane,

As I write this, we have just wrapped up your birthday party with family and friends, which you then followed up by watching the Doctor Who Christmas special.  Due to the timing of the holidays, we had your party a day early.  But today is the actual day.  Today, you will step over the threshold and turn thirteen.

Frankly, this is all happening a little too fast for me.  First you started junior high, and now you want to be a teenager.  How can you possibly be the same baby girl who showed up four days overdue?  Or the toddler who loved on her newborn brother?  Or the preschooler who loved princess dress-up and playing in the toy kitchen?  Or the proud kindergartener who brought her infant brother for show and tell?

It seems like it’s all gone by in a flash, and now you want an Instagram account. *sigh*

As you are getting older, and are beginning to step out into the grown-up world, I am profoundly grateful for a few things.  First, that you have so many adult friends and people who genuinely care about you because you are you, not because they are related to you or tied to you in any way.  These friendships are a blessing, and they mean that you have lots of “backup” when you have questions or problems that might need more perspective than Mom or Dad can give you.  Second, I am grateful that you are close to us, to your brothers, to your grandparents, to your great-grandparents, and to your aunts and uncles and cousins.  We have a pretty extensive family network, and you are an integral part of it.  And finally, that your faith is becoming a more core part of your personality.  I can see it in how you interact with your friends, how you volunteer at church, and sometimes how it affects your relationships with your brothers.  (It’s a work in progress, I get it.)  Growing up takes years, and it takes support and lots of people around you.  Make sure that you take everyone who cares about you along for this adventure, because it isn’t going to happen overnight.

I usually write a verse down for you in your letter, but this year I’m writing down the lyrics to an old worship song that your Dad and I grew up singing.  I’ve got a copy of the track, so you can hear it later, though you might know it.

Turn your eyes upon Jesus,
Look full in His wonderful face;
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim
In the light of His glory and grace.

There aren’t enough words to tell you how much I love you, dear girl.  Happy 13th birthday!

Ane 13 candles


2 Responses to “Lucky Thirteen”

  1. Linda
    December 27th, 2016 12:30

    Happy 13th, Ane!
    Love and hugs from the two of us!

  2. Ressis
    December 27th, 2016 13:30

    I remember when she was born! Such a tiny, spunky baby!