In the midst of a couple of hard days, seeing this picture when I plugged in my camera made my heart skip. She is such a beautiful, funny, creative spirit. She is also headstrong, fiercely independent (when she wants to be), and still so young. She knows how to push buttons, fight tooth & nail, and break my heart into a million pieces. In the morning, she still wants to cuddle and drink tea and "help" and then there are times when she won't listen, throws massive fits, gets in trouble at school, and won't give anyone breathing room. I am pretty sure that things will only get harder from here, but she is teaching me everyday to take deep breaths, to react calmly, and to think before I speak. I am so afraid of messing up with her. I want her to grow up knowing that we love her and that we always try our hardest to do right by her. She is my heart & soul. And, God, I love her so.