Today a very special young woman celebrates her 22nd birthday. For me, it has been many years of special memories. I met her when she was 10 and at first I wasn’t her favorite person because I took her ticket to the Pirate game. Thank goodness she forgave me and we can now look back and laugh. I still go to Pirate games but at least now she goes to at least one game with her Dad and I.
I watched as I saw a young singer and actress bloom. She sang a solo at the first 5th grade concert I attended and could have listened to her sing for hours. Then there was her role in the school play Annie. She played the role of one of the orphans which was a sign of things to come. She continued her singing and acting throughout middle and high school. I was fortunate enough to watch many plays including Footloose, lead roles in Guys and Dolls as well as White Christmas.
Softball was another part of her middle and high school years. She expressed an interest in pitching and she became a very good pitcher. She not only played for the school and community league but also travel teams. Although 6 a.m. on weekends were not the prime time, it was always fun going to the games and watching her pitch and hit the home runs over the concession stand roof.
Scholastically she excelled as an honor student. Senior year came quickly and college was looming. She had a dream which was to go to NYU. I will never forget when that acceptance letter came. I was proud of her.
For me one of the best memories are our yearly school shopping trips. It was a day of girl shopping. Then there was our shared passion of reading. It was always fun to talk about the books we were reading and even now going into her book library to borrow the book she said was a good read. There were also the history and political discussions as well as just the “girl talk” One of the best times was my weekend trip to NYU and the non-tourist tour of New York.
There are too many memories to detail here. I have watched a little girl grow into a beautiful, intelligent kind young woman. She has accomplished so much in her 22 years. I am so proud of her and all her achievements. I considered her my daughter and a cherished family member.
Happy Birthday Shannon! Enjoy your day! Love you much!