Since the moment I held you in my arms for the very first time, I knew that I had something very precious. As the months and years have flown by, I have become painfully aware of just how precious and fleeting this time is, and has been. I have been thinking about this day for as long as I can remember, and the changes that I know are inevitable. Although our bond is unbreakable, I know that this next chapter will hold a new reality for us. I won’t be able to shield you from all the challenges that lay ahead. I want to protect you from everything, and for nothing to ever hurt you, but I know I need to let go a little bit now. You’ll become a little bit more independent every day, and will need me a little bit less as you learn and grow. But please remember that I will still be here whenever you want to be my baby again, if you just want to sink into my arms and pretend we are back in that care-free cocoon of endless days when it was just us. I know I need to trust that we have instilled kindness, tolerance and self-confidence in you, and that you will flourish on your own. You are so brave and full of excitement for this new adventure, and now I need to be brave too.
I love you, my girl. Don't ever shy away from being yourself. I’m so proud of you.