Eighteen years ago today, I became a mother for the first time.
It was and remains, the single best thing that ever happened to me.
It changed me profoundly - made me realize in that exact moment, what my purpose was.
Before that, everything else seems so unimportant.
When Isabella was born, she was so alert.
Staring right into my eyes curiously wondering who the heck I was.
I felt as though my own eyes were staring back at me - I felt oddly at peace and complete.
Not knowing then that two more would later come along.
I loved her and do with everything I was. Right to the core of me -
I had never known a love like that existed.
The sleepless nights that followed and there were six months worth of them were all worth it.
Those moments in the dark where I would nurse her were among the best moments of my life.
I could stare at her for hours.
I spent countless hours dressing her, changing here and photographing her.
Much like I would her brother and sister later on.
She was a beautiful child.
I would often get stopped and told how much she resembled a young Shirley Temple - a similiar head of golden curls graced my little girl.
As she grew up, she became a shy, sweet soul.
Never speaking out in class - remembered to this day as the child who rarely spoke.
She later blossomed but some of those characteristics remain.
She shy's easily. Is not one who enjoys being the centre of attention. May not be the first to speak up.
But she is wise beyond her years.
A veracious reader always.
And a very logical thinker.
Today, on the morning of her 18th birthday, I watched her sleep open-mouthed and still can't imagine where the years have gone.
How my little curly haired girl became a woman.
Today she can vote.
Today she can buy a lottery ticket and plans to.
Tomorrow, she'll take on the world.
I am ridiculously proud of her.
For who she is, and for who she will become.
I love you more than anything my sweet Izzy.
Don't ever change.