I think back to Makenzie’s last birthday and thought that my daughter was weird. We asked her if she wanted to have a party to celebrate her 18th birthday. We asked her if she wanted to “do it up grand” but instead, all she wanted was to be with Kellie, Nathan, Maddie, Grandpa, Grandma and me. Didn’t matter what we did. Didn’t matter where we went. She simply wanted to be with the people who loved her most. Weird.
So we packed up a picnic and headed to the beach; just the seven of us; the perfect number to celebrate a perfect day. Fighting the salted-infused breeze, we lit the candles, slaughtered THE SONG, and munched on a Sam’s Club, hand crafted, glazed lemon cake. Simple. Beautiful. Holy. Weird.
Today, we don’t have any candles; no cake or picnic. We didn’t wake up, pull out our family’s Celebration Plate on which would be her birthday breakfast. We didn’t sneak up to her room, jump on her bed and wake her up by yelling “Happy Birthday!” All we have this year are the well wishes of her dear friends and family, the memory of birthday’s past and the pictures that support them.
But for us, that is enough. Because for 18 years, we raised the amazing girl whom God entrusted to us. A girl who loved her Maker. A girl who changed our lives. A girl who, by being beautifully different, was wonderfully weird.
Happy Birthday, my dearest princess.