Tuesday, May 08, 2012

Happy 21st Birthday Porten

Another of our children has hit a milestone in their life. Our second oldest daughter is 21-years old today already. That may not be such a milestone in the eyes of some but for a kid it opens up so much. They cannot wait for this day...mostly because they can go out with their friends to the bars and buy a six pack at the store. For parents it opens up more 'worry-doors'.

So tonight, P and I are going to go out with her and her friends to celebrate with a couple of drinks, some good laughs, and perhaps throw in a couple of embarrassing moments of our daughter's life.

This little girl was not a beautiful baby but instead very unique. She wasn't born with a lot of hair, she had tiny little eyes, pudgy little cheeks, and was a complete mama's girl. No one could hold her and comfort her but her mama and I was fine with that. The first few days of her life I was terribly sick with a very high fever so she slept next to me--her 'heater'--pretty much for the first week after she came into this world. The only time she left my side was when P changed her for me. Sadly I was so sick that I could barely get myself out of bed to eat let alone talk to her--she cried, I fed her while I slept, she cried and didn't want to eat P took her from me and brought her back to sleep with me.

Anyway, this unique looking little girl changed within three months. Her eyes became huge, she grew a tiny bit of peach fuzz on her head, and her face changed. From a very young age we told people she had Disney eyes...and that has not changed. As she grew more her hair started to come in--by the time she was 2 she had soft flowing light brown curls down to the middle of her back. Beautiful hair--until her older sister, who was 3 at the time, decided they needed haircuts. Those curls ended up in a paper lunch bag...

Barney was a big hit around the time J was 2 1/2. I remember her dad talking about this show with the purple dinosaur--he would lay on the couch and watch it with the girls. Soon this purple dinosaur became the highlight of our daughter's life--she had to have Barney clothes, Barney bedding, Barney toys, and she even dressed up like Barney for Halloween...yeah, she was obsessed. She also took a liking to dancing and singing. That girl wore dresses all the time..and if she didn't have a clean one she would put on her night gown. One of her favorite things to do was spin around and watch her dresses fly up....she would do this for hours.

As she grew older, we signed her up for dance for a few years which she absolutely loved. Then she started playing soccer on top of that. What was peculiar about her was her inability to full out run as a little girl. She never ran full on...she galloped. So when the day arrived during a soccer game that she just suddenly lost that galloping step and took off running both P and I noticed immediately.

As the years have continued to pass by J grew into a very sophisticated woman somehow....throughout junior and senior high she excelled in all her classes and graduated in the top five of her class. She was very hard on herself if she received less than an A on any assignment even if it was in gym class. She took college courses in high school and aced them all. Not only was she completely dedicated to her schooling but she held down two jobs--and at times three  in her spare time so she could make money! WOW!

Today, she's working in a bank as a teller, going to school part time, and building her own photography business. This girl has camera equipment that makes me drool! She has rekindled that spark in me..has urged me to pick up my camera again and start doing what she knows I love to do. She is a spit fire--had numerous temper tantrums when she was little that could break anyone's ear drum...she is stubborn, smart, has a huge heart, loves deeply, hurts easily, has one hell of a sense of humor, and is a daughter that can make any parent proud. She takes no shit but if hurt doesn't wear it on her sleeve either!
I have posted a sample of one of her photos that has gone down so far as one of her greatest prom pictures and I would have to agree whether it be a bias thing or an eye for a great photograph. This girl is going to succeed in this messed up life. Since she was very young she has had the determination of one who will conquer and make a name for herself. While she may never be famous or wealthy, she will always be famous in our hearts for her motivation and good-natured spirit and filthy rich with love from us and all those who have the honor of knowing her! Happy 21st Birthday Porten! We love you more than words could ever explain and could not be MORE proud of all that you have accomplished in these 21 years!!

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