Dear Piper, 

Happy 17th birthday! 

I woke up this morning, rolled over to your dad and said “I can not believe our baby is 17.”

I have spent more time with you in the past year than I have since you were really young. I am constantly amazed at the friend that you are to everyone. You legitimately love people and are loyal to an absolute fault. You fiercely love your friends no matter what — especially in times when you should walk away and don’t.

You are kind and good at your core. You are also funny and older than your years. Exhausted is also the other word that comes to mind since you have your hand in every activity under the sun. Somehow you manage to juggle it all – school, dance, color guard, social time. It’s a lot.

Like every other year of your life, I’m not sure that I’ve ever met anyone that works harder than you do. Your work ethic is incredible and so admirable. You are an example to everyone around you (adults included). There is not a lazy bone in your body.

My wish for you in year 17 is to keep your head screwed on straight. Hold yourself to the highest standard at all times. You have set yourself up for a huge future and have every opportunity within your grasp. Stay grounded! 

Happy birthday, beautiful girl. Being 16 handed you some lemons, but I know that 17 will be your year. You have some amazing things in the works and I can’t wait to see them all happen for you.

I love you more than you will ever know,