My Baby turns 28 today. Where did the time go? I remember so vividly being pregnant with her, as if it just happened. I craved chocolate, guacamole, ice cream and Mexican food all the time. Those are foods she still loves. Coincidence? I think not. Anyone who has raised children knows it’s not always easy. But those challenges make us stronger, and it makes our bond stronger, as well. I had the luxury of being a stay at home mom, and having that time with My Baby when she was little was a great gift – for both of us. When she was little, we were inseparable. When her first day of pre-school came, I anticipated tears and anxiety. I just didn’t anticipate they would be mine. As she stepped into her little classroom for the first time, she ran directly to the other kids and never looked back. Thankfully, my mother-in-law was there to pick me up off the carpet, tell me to stop throwing a tantrum, and dry my tears. When she was in elementary school, I was a parent volunteer. That volunteer work eventually turned into a full-time job, and we “went to school together” each day. The extra time she had after school while I was still working, gave her extra time with her teachers as she volunteered to stay and help or spent time in my office doing homework. I think that experience helped form her decision to go into education as a college student. She is now a second grade teacher, and she still has that love of the classroom. She thrives on being there for her students and nurturing them into children who love learning, just as she did. It’s another one of those “life coming full circle” moments I’ve written about before. We don’t always know if our children are watching or learning from our example, then one day we see them in the roles we previously played, and it all comes back around. I see patience in her as an adult that I never saw in her as an only child. I see the way she expresses joy and excitement and affection with my grandbabies, and it makes me very proud. She is a reflection of me in many ways, but her own woman in many others. She is a beautiful person, inside and out. She is an independent thinker, a compassionate teacher, a devoted wife and mother, and one of my very closest friends. I couldn’t be more proud of the person she has become, and I can’t imagine having a better daughter. Simply put, she is amazing. She is my greatest accomplishment and my proudest achievement. And isn’t that what every mother dreams of for her children? So today, The Complete Package and I share our warmest wishes for our daughter. Happy birthday, honey. We love you.