Laken 17 · November 16th 2008

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Laken turned 17 on Sunday.

This was an emotional Birthday for me. I can clearly remember the day she was born,it was a life changing event for me.It was then that I knew how much love a heart could hold without exploding.It was then that I knew that my choice to be a mother was priceless and that I wanted to have a family with many beautiful children.With that, came four more.

Laken would pack potatoes around when she learned to crawl.We lived in South Carolina at the time and I had my potatoes in the lower cabinet.It wasn't long before she did the one armed potato crawl. She would put one potato under her armpit and the other in her mouth and she would crawl around on one side packing that potato.

When Laken was two years old she would sit on the floor and put together puzzles.Sounds like no big deal, but these were really really hard puzzles.I used to sit there in amazement as she completed a 100 or 200 piece puzzle at age two. I knew right then that I was the Mother of a genius and that she would amount to something great in the world ;) She is still putting together puzzles to this day. I have decided that Laken loves a challenge and has been challenged her whole 17 years of life.

She continues to carry on with one eye opened and one eye shut.......Never missing anything.She is a lover of school,a lover of music,and somehow juggles two boyfriends at once and everyone seems happy. A skill I never mastered.She is an angel of compassion,always lifting the sad.She is a survivor of many many difficult things.

Her faith in God and a plan for her is something that she has always understood.It seems that she knew from the time she was 9 and had brain surgery that the Lord had a hand in her life and that she was going to move forward.As I pondered what the future might hold for my 9 year old,Laken grabbed my hand at the time of diagnosis and said ~

 " Don't worry Mom,Heavenly Father will protect me. "

I knew how much love a heart could hold without exploding.I am so thankful for life and the experiences that come with it.Tragedy included.If we never had to pour out our hearts to God with the deepest sorrow,pleading for comfort,we would never know God.

I love my daughter Laken and wish her a Happy 17th Birthday.I needed my children in this life to overcome my weaknesses,to learn,to grow,to develop faith,to lose selfishness,to understand the Love of God.To sit down and put together a 100 piece puzzle and in the end see the finished product.

Lifes most beautiful picture ~


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