14 How did THAT happen?

This week my oldest daughter Anneke turned 14. FOURTEEN.
And now she is growing into a beautiful young lady who loves country music and horses. Crazy! (that is her BFF...tango)Sometimes it's great...watching her grow up...seeing her become her own person. But sometimes it's just plain HARD. And it's tough to know how to parent...when to guide...when to strong arm...when to let go. It's the letting go part that is the most difficult. Every time I give a little, I want to take it back. Is that normal?
I do what I can to share in what she loves...the horses part is easy. She gets that passion from me, and I will do ANYTHING to facilitate her love for them and her desire to be with them. Her little sisters seem to be equally enamored...we would make a great horse family...don't you think?
The country music piece is growing on me. I can appreciate...and even LIKE Carrie Underwood (her hero). That was actually her birthday gift...we went to see Carrie in concert...just the two of us, and it was WAY fun! My favorite part? Was watching Anneke! She was so excited when Carrie came on stage her hands were shaking as she was trying to take pictures. So cute!
But there are days we don't like each other much. You know, I'm not just mom, I'm her teacher too...and I can be demanding. And she can be difficult and stubborn - (I have NO idea where that would come from...NONE :) It's not always easy to play both roles. It would be easier to give in, or give up. But we work through it. Again, that's all part of it right?
But each day I am grateful for her, for her spirit, for her heart, for her creativity and just for who she is. Anneke you will be an amazing adult...IF I let you live that long! (just kidding! she does, in fact, read my blog! LOL) I love her hugs in the morning. I love our conversations, just because. I love that she still asks my opinion. I love that at the end of the day she is "just a little girl" that needs a mom, however imperfect of one she happens to have. I am just so grateful.
So to you Anneke, I wish you a very, very Happy Birthday! I love you to the moon and back.
love, mom

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