Dear Catie….

Today starts the end of middle school for you. As everyone said they would, the past three years have gone faster than Reece’s in your lunch bag. (Very fast.)

You are unique, sweetheart. Your effervescence and joy make you so fun. Yes, you have ALL THE ENERGY ALL THE TIME, which makes you seem so much younger than 13. This also makes you different than the eye-rolling, exasperated stereotypes of teenagers. You always see the happier parts of life. And you never let fights or frustration get you down. You encourage and rally and agree and love.

As you get older, sweetie, it might feel awkward to be The Happy One. Some people don’t like your endless energy. They tease you. Or some treat you like you’re dumb. And oh my goodness, never listen to them. Because God formed you to be different, to bring ALL THE EXCITEMENT to this world. Being hopeful, excited, passionate, and silly is always the right way to be.

One more bit of advice: please know it’s absolutely okay if people don’t like you. You don’t have to be cute enough, sweet enough, or accommodating enough for them. You only have to be you. Because you are wonderful.

You are transforming your world with your beautiful smile and your contagious love of life. And I am so blessed to have a front row seat.

I love you so much. Eighth Grade will be SUPER FUN.


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