Today, we celebrate 15 years of being parents. We kept something alive for 15 years!! Woohoo!

Joking aside, I remember how much the oldest Mountain Kid scared us even before she was born. They hooked us up to a heart monitor a few times during the last week or so, as she decided to make a good statement.

Mountain Kid 1 and Mountain Kid 2 run along the shore of the Ohio River.

Despite my plans to have the most natural childbirth possible, labor had to be induced. When she was ready to immerge from the world, the doctor had more pressing matters — the birth of twins — down the hall. I remember yelling, “I need to push,” and seeing a nurse who was on her first day of the job near my feet. Her eyes grew 10 times in size at that moment.

By the time the doctor came back, the induction medication had worn out and I basically had to force Mountain Kid 1 out. She has been the apple of her father’s eye ever since.

The world wasn’t ready for her. It rained the night we took her home. The storm was so violent that lightning hit either our house or a nearby transformer, knocking power out. By the time the power came back on, our TV turned everyone in Star Wars into Smurfs.

Our dogs adored the newest member of the family. Fifteen years later, our dogs we still do. One sleeps with her almost every night, almost like a living stuffed animal.

To be honest, I didn’t know what I was doing as a new mom. In many ways I still don’t, as we navigate her teen years.

I know she struggles with many of the same things I did as a teen, but she seems more confident than I was at her age.

I hope we armed her with knowledge that will serve her well into adulthood.

I hope she finds joy in all of her adventures, even when they are tough.

I hope she gets the respect she deserves in all situations.

I hope she can spot jerks from a mile away and have the confidence to put them in their place.

I hope her adventures while she’s under our roof lead to something spectacular later on in life.

I hope she stays true to herself .

I hope she always knows and remembers how much we love her.