Today my beautiful first-born daughter, heart of my heart, turned 26 years old.

She is an adult now. She has a home of her own, two dogs of her own. She works a full-time job, she pays her own bills. She is in a committed relationship, and stays close to her family. She has a vast network of supportive friends.

She is single and living the life of a young adult on her own in Chicago. She will look back on this time in her life when she is older, and be so glad she made the decisions she made, took the path she chose. This is just one phase of her long happy life, and it’s a good one.

I am very proud of her and the woman she’s become. I miss her every single day I am away from her.

I love you, Beauty. Happy birthday.