The first blog post I wrote for you on your (6th) birthday included this quote by an unknown author: "A daughter is the happy memories of the past, the joyful moments of the present, and the hope and promise of the future." On this your 18th birthday, I find those words to be truer than ever. As we breakfasted together at Cioccolata's, it was precious to reflect with you and Daddy on each of your prior birthdays while scrolling through the posts that showed your growth and maturity year by year. I am so very thankful for each "happy memory of the past" we have together!
I am also so thankful for the "joyful moments of the present." On your birthday we walked through an aisle of Iquique's downtown Mercado Centenario to choose a bouquet of carnations for your room. Then Daddy drove us to the water's edge where we could dip our toes in the Pacific Ocean for a few placid moments. Later than afternoon, friends arrived and we enjoyed Domino's Pizza (at your request) and the richest of chocolate cakes with the Diaz family, your siblings, Aunt Pam and Uncle Jon. (Of course, we nearly ignited the cake with fast-burning candles but that only made things more memorable!)
You hold a unique place in our family as the oldest and first to face so many big changes. I treasure each day we have left to enjoy your presence, even as we prepare for the "hope and promise of the future." We have spent hours considering schooling options, careers, fears and dreams. Thankfully your growing brood of pets keeps you occupied and absorbed when life threatens to overwhelm! But more importantly you are learning to turn to the Creator of your life (and theirs) for answers to the big questions that lie before you. Your rhythm of life is different than many of ours: enjoying solitude while having your own room for the first time, walking dogs (yours and the neighbor's), holding hamsters and feeding fish. Though we encourage you to "get out more" we also appreciate that you love home, and we try not to think of how empty home will be without you next year.
Eva, you were our first baby and blessing from God through adoption just two days before Mother's Day, 2001. Those memories are engraved forever on my my heart and I can only thank God for the miraculous privilege of being your mom through eighteen precious years. There have been so many unexpected surprises, challenges and beautiful gifts and I trust God for His perfect plan in your life. Thank you for loving Him and for loving us. Daddy and I love you so very much. Happy 18th Birthday!
Birthday Posts by Year:
17th Birthday - Eva
16th Birthday - Eva
15th Birthday - Eva
14th Birthday - Eva
13th Birthday - Eva
12th Birthday - Eva
11th Birthday - Eva