It is hard for me to believe that my baby girl turns 26 this week (March 25). Next year after her birthday, hopefully we will have finished all the preparations for her wedding on April 16, 2016.
After a couple of miscarriages and a tubal pregnancy, I was about to resign myself to the fact that I would not be having any more children. But God had other plans and blessed us with our baby girl. After being in labor — my longest one — for 13 hours the doctor was about to have me prepped for a C-section. My mother came in to pray and during this prayer our daughter decided it was time to get the show on the road and she was born within minutes after that.
We had already picked out a name but after seeing her the name did not fit so we changed the name. Her father named her Cally after J.R. Ewing’s wife on Dallas and we named her middle name after her grandmother, Joyce who has since gone to be with the Lord as has Cally’s dad.
As the baby, of course, she was spoiled, but not just by mom and dad but by her bigger brothers and sisters as well. Fortunately, she was not spoiled rotten!
Her father died from cancer when she was 13 and shortly after her 14th birthday she was in the children’s hospital for 10 days for pains which could not be explained. One doctor suggested it was from the stress of losing her father.
However, the pains have come and gone over the years and we are possibly facing another hospital stay for exploratory surgery in the next few weeks. I believe God is the Great Physician and we are praying and trusting that won’t be necessary.
She was a daddy’s girl through and through as he always gave in to her for everything and I worked a lot and his job allowed him to be home with her more during the daylight hours. She developed a love for Disney movies as he could nap while she watched them and she still has the collection today.
We butted heads a lot because I didn’t give in quite as easily. All of that changed a great deal when her father died. I became the enemy for a short time as she blamed me and God for his death. But once we got past all of that, our relationship became strong and as an adult we are good friends.
I worried a lot about her for a while because she was so caring and trusting of other people. She would give someone the shirt off her back if she thought they needed it. She still is a very compassionate young lady.
I can count on her to support me in my different endeavors and I return that support. I could not love my future son-in-law anymore than I do and God certainly blessed her when he sent him to her. He truly loves her and that is plainly visible in his actions. They are perfect for each other.
They have been engaged for almost five years as Jeff wanted to finish his schooling and he should be finished this year.
One of the last things Cally’s father did before he died was start construction on what was going to be a play house but ended up being almost 1000 square feet and we have always called it Cally’s house. We have been doing some things along and now need to ramp up finishing it because they are planning on living in it once they are married, at least for a while. So, I don’t have to experience the pains of her moving far away.
After checking around for venues and getting costs, etc. and with some venues already booked up for years in advance, we decided on holding the wedding at the pond in the backyard. That is not as easy as it may sound either as a gazebo has to be built, trees planted and lots of cleanup and other preparations, including getting the house finished for them to move into.
Because they have been collecting furniture, etc. for the marriage, her stuff is taking up three rooms in my house so I am kind of looking forward to getting my house back so we can do some remodeling we want to do.
She has already found ”the dress” which we ordered and will be here in May. Watching her try on dresses was a very emotional day for her and me.
She is saddened that her dad and some grandparents won’t be in attendance but I assure her they will be watching from heaven. I will be the one walking her down the aisle.
We have had ups and downs along the way but I know that Cally has my back and I think she knows I have hers. She is quick to take up for me and we have a special mother-daughter bond that I thank God for regularly. We may not always see eye to eye on everything but we respect each other’s opinion.
A couple people have commented that we are starting early on preparations but we have a lot to get done and I know how fast time flies. It will be here before we know it. And we want things to be as perfect as possible for our last child’s wedding.
Happy 26th birthday Cally! We love you to the moon and back and are proud of the young woman you have become.
VICTORIA SIMMONS is a columnist, motivational speaker/ minister and publisher/gm of The Post/Byron Buzz. Reach her by email at firstname.lastname@example.org