Dear Monica

Dear Monica,

Wow. You make a beautiful 12 year old. Gorgeous actually. And I love you so much.

Seriously, sometimes I just find myself brushing my hair or driving to work and I am struck by how much I seriously love you.

You. Are. Awesome.

This year you had your first full year of junior high school, you took a trip to Jamaica, we had our first full-out conversation that didn’t require you to hand the phone off to mom even once, and we both got to go to Florida on our first mission trip.

You still have a lot of school left though, and probably many more trips out of the country, and I pray we will get to have many, many more phone conversations and mission trips.

The thing I’m most proud of is your love for God. You listen to Christian radio and pray and read devotionals and really, you just ‘get it.’ You believe with all your heart that he is real, and you do your best to live your life in a way that lights the world.

I think my favorite moment this year was when you and were both at a Christian book store and I was donning my Saturday fashions (see: dirty hair, yoga pants, flip flops) and I was going on and on to the store clerk about a youth leader book I liked, and after we left you mentioned that you were a little embarrassed by the whole thing, but then quickly figured, “it was for God, so whatever.”

I loved that.

Sure, sure we both know you’re not perfect all the time, but I see how hard you try to always be a better person and it constantly amazes me. I wish I had your ambition and your faith at 12. I wish I had your world awareness and your courage.

Lucky for me though, I get to have you in my life — and that’s more than enough for me.

Happy Birthday.



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