For my daughter on her birthday

Hello my sweet girl.

It's hard to comprehend how fast you are growing and how quickly you are learning new things. I watch you and see how you face the challenges in your life with bravery beyond what anyone would expect from five (now six) year old girl. In my observations, I have learned one lesson over and over again: this world is yours.

You can conquer all things.
You can go anywhere you want.
You can accomplish anything you set out to do.

You might not believe me, but some day you will. If you attack the rest of your life with the same passion you display now, doors will open for you. You will inspire people. You all ready inspire me.

But right now, it's not so easy. I know that it is tough being you. Your brothers know exactly how to make you mad, and it seems like they find enjoyment in your anger. It's not fair, and it's not right but you also know how to make them mad. That's a part of having siblings. Eventually, those two boys will be your bodyguards and your best friends.

You have the ability to experience all of the feelings at the same time. I'm sure you have felt emotions that I don't even have words to define. It sucks sometimes, but these highs and lows that you feel make you stronger and give you a deep sense of empathy for others. Your wide emotional vocabulary has built within you an admirable compassion for your friends, your family, and even strangers.

If life was a card game, you'd be holding a bunch of cards that you don't know what purpose they serve while everyone else around you are saying "Uno!" But something within you won't give up. You have the drive that will figure it out eventually. Through tears and laughter, hurt feelings and nervous excitement, you keep trying. That is why this world is yours.

I'm not sure if you're able to see that will to push on within yourself. I'm not sure you recognize how strong you are. So please, trust me when I say that you are capable of more than you realize. Until then, remember a few things.

You will not grow up in a house where you get everything you want. But you will have everything you need.
Your father is not a perfect man, but I will always do the best that I know how to do.
Even your darkest moments will pass.
No matter what, you are loved.

I will always love you.

Happy birthday.

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