28 years ago today, at 9 am, my parent’s phone rang and they got the call they’d been waiting for. That afternoon, they loaded up my dad’s infamous Blazer and drove to Depelchin Children’s Center to pick me up – their adopted daughter. I was added to my brother (then 11) and my immediate family was completed.
It’s amazing to me how God work His master plan. Even without blood ties, my family and I are perfectly connected. I’ve always been a daddy’s girl and my mom has always been one of my best friends. In fact, my parents have walked that line between friend and parent better than anyone else I know.
My dad is the brilliant and surprisingly hilarious. He can crack a joke without cracking a smile that will slay an entire room. He taught me to drive when I was 11, out on the back roads by my grandmother’s farm. Have you ever been passed by a tractor? I have – and my dad was STILL telling me to slow down. He introduced me to Get Smart, and set me on a track that has developed into my sophisticated, finer sense of humor that we still share today.
This is the man who helped me build an oil rig out of popsicle sticks and taught me to never throw anything away. No matter how far across the world he traveled for work, he always made it back for my dance recitals and birthdays. He was never able to teach me math, but he did teach me to honor the gifts that God gave me. And he made certain that every guy who picked me up at his door for a date was going to treat me with the upmost respect. Because of my dad’s strength, I always readily accepted God as a father figure.
This video is SO my dad. In fact, minus the sleeveless shirt, he basically owns all of these guy's wardrobe - including that exact Hawaiian shirt and phone belt clip. I couldn't have written this song better myself!
My mom was always my rock. She worked as hard as she could from home so that I never came home to an empty house. She taught me how to be a lady and how to stand my ground. She taught me how to wear makeup, how to walk in heels, and the importance of a signature scent. She was the original Proverbs 31 woman, hard working and full of tenderness towards her family.
I never once had to hesitate to call my mom – no matter the hour of night. Every phone call (even those made collect while I was at camp, when I needed to talk so bad that I couldn’t wait to go back to my room to find a quarter) was readily answered and rewarded by her heavy accent that sounded just like home. It was my mom who taught me to drive at 16 (we decided to preserve my dad’s heart and our relationship), who still does my hair for every special occasion, and who still tolerates my frequent borrowing of jewelry and makeup.
My parents gave me my love of reading. They read me bedtime stories until I knew them well enough to recite them on my own. My favorite was the story of my adoption, and they always told it with the greatest respect towards my biological mother and her sacrifice. Church was never to be missed, even when we were out of town. I have precious memories of hotel room communions and Bible verses.
My abilities were applauded and encouraged (my dad recently revealed a file cabinet drawer that contained every bit of writing I had done since elementary school) and my strength was never questioned. It is due to them that I have reached every success in my life.
And my new favorite part about my parents? Watching them bond with Larkin.
He and his grandpa are such good buddies, and he nearly dives out of my arms when dad walks in the door. When dad is in Dallas and calls home, Larkin’s favorite part of the evening is listening to grandpa talk over speaker phone. And sometimes I wonder if my mom isn’t even more proud of the little bit than I am! Gigi is pretty much his favorite person on Earth. They have showered him with love and affection, and are well on their way to spoiling him completely rotten. And they have been invaluable to me – starting with our first day home from the hospital when they rescued us at 4 am by taking Larkin and allowing us a bit of sleep, and a million blessed breaks that have followed.
I wasn’t born to my parents, but I was born for them. I thank God every day that 28 years ago, He paired up a family in want with a baby in need, and formed us.