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    Ode to my eldest daughter

    Fridays are typically when I pontificate here on what I learned during the week. What I learned this week is this: My eldest daughter is one of the most kind-hearted, deserving and — most importantly today — resilient women I know.

    eldest daughterWhen Brianna was a teen, Jim and I often marvelled at the manner in which she could come under the wrath of her parents — for, like all teens, Brianna certainly did some wrath-invoking acts of idiocy — yet the next day she'd be fine. All was forgotten and forgiven, and she moved on with a cheerful heart.

    That attribute, the trait that leads her to continually forgive, forget and move on without grievance or grudge is what has kept her afloat time and again as she makes her way in adulthood.

    Since leaving the nest, Brianna has faced challenges unparalleled by those of her younger sisters. Physical, financial, personal, professional. A time or two she's returned home on wounded wing, then flew away again once her wings were repaired, could carry her swiftly, confidently.

    father and adult daughters

    Troubles and trials — as well as more than her share of unworthy suitors — do their best to knock Brianna down. Yet again and again, she gets back up, smiles between tears, professes her hope for better times and sets about putting plans into place. Her pluck, persistence and continued cheerfulness after tear-jerking surprises flood my heart with pride and admiration for her this week.

    Many years ago, when Brianna first moved away from home and into adulthood, she gave me a plaque that still stands on my dresser. It reads:

    Mothers and Daughters plaqueOne of

    the nicest

    things about


    Mother and


    is that one day

    you discover


    turned into


    I'm deeply honored and forever grateful that this bright and beautiful, kind and caring woman named Brianna — the strong-willed baby we nicknamed Nonner — is not only my daughter but so easily turned into my friend.

    She's also my leader when it comes to forgiving, forgetting, moving on. So this week, as I want to trash and bash and flat-out smash another who has hurt my baby girl, I will instead simply wrap up Brianna in love.

    Because that is what Brianna would do.

    And because at such times, there is little else the mother of an adult child can do.

    Today's question:

    Who or what touched your heart this past week?

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    Reader Comments (20)

    I'm amazed by how much I still learn from my adult children. Lisa, it sounds like you have a wonderful teacher. Thank goodness for gracious hearts like Brianna's in a sometimes cruel world. What a blessing you and the rest of us have been given.

    My Mom touched my heart this past week. Her face lit up when I walked into the room and she said (and remembered) my name. Sometimes the small things are the biggest gifts.

    January 10, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterNonnieKelly

    My youngest is much the same.stubborn to a fault, but always loving and forgiving. I often called her my duck. Her brother could be hurt in an instant and take forever to move on. But she always found a way to be positive and move forward. I love watchimg her grow and be a mother now!

    January 10, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterMimi Gin

    Brianna is lucky to have the the mother and friend she has in you.
    My heart is touched often when I see what wonderful parents all my children have become.

    January 10, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterJeanie

    This brought tears to my eyes, Lisa. Like you, I have adult children out in the world who sometimes stumble and fall. I think I feel their bruises more acutely than they do. Brianna is lucky to have the love and support of an amazing mother. Wishing better days ahead for your lovely daughter.

    January 10, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterHelene Cohen Bludman

    What a beautiful smile she has! This week I was touched by a book I'm reading about a woman's journey through some very hard times. She chose to pursue God over her own worldly desires and found, in Him, strength to continue her walk without finding change In her circumstance. I was inspired.

    January 10, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterAmy Hollis

    With seven adult children, it seems, sometimes, that every single one is going through hard times at the same time. At least that seemed to be the current situation. However, this week produced positive results for ONE of my seven and, I've been thanking God for that, almost as continuously as I had been praying for them all. Yes, that touched my heart!

    Brianna is my beloved granddaughter, was my very first, and anyone causing her pain is just asking for my wrath. Please. please, let that precious girl be okay!

    January 10, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterAnn

    Lisa, you are awesome. I am rooting for Brianna, who I know will triumph because she has an amazing mother/role model to inspire her. I love that plaque, and am going to copy it and send it to both my mom and my daughter. Go, Brianna! xo

    January 10, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterLois Alter Mark

    Your post about your beautiful Brianna has touched my heart this week. She will get through this latest setback because she is such a strong and awesome woman and she has very supportive parents in you and Jim. Give her our love!

    January 10, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterDebbie E.

    And how lucky is she to have a mother like you. A friend, a refuge a cheerleader. Loved this, Lisa.

    January 10, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterGrown and Flown

    You and Brianna just touched my heart, Lisa. We do learn so much from our children, and not having a daughter I can only imagine your worries are different than mine. But a broken heart? We are one and the same.

    I loved this post, and feel that because of our friendship your daughter is one of my own. So, with that in mind, I say a heartfelt BRAVO Brianna, for all that you are to the world, and what you mean to your mom. A very special lady.

    January 10, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterCathy

    I only have one daughter and one child the very same, when she got hurt when she was a wee one I had to fight crying too, she is sensitive to the point of when people yelled or were loud she would cry..Sad situations really got to her, she nearly fainted in grade school when her best friend broke her arm, yet she was the calmest in the group and held her long hair and soothed her before the ambulance came by speaking softly..She is such a sweet angel of a human being, brave and fearless and kind..she never judges anyone and is generous to a fault, she babysits the babies and just adores them, gets down on the floors and read to them and or holds them entire time the parents are gone..She loves them from afar as she is won't to say..A true angel on this earth if anyone criticizes her I have to hold my tongue as I figure they really don't know our angel at all..she was the only girl grandchild for 22 years sadly her grandmother passed away the day after she graduated from college, she held on to see her sweet angel graduate..she was nearly 100..oh, was she adored by her grandmother and grandfather and her many uncles and male cousins, she is the best..I read your blog, times will come and go but your daughter will always be attached to your heart..what a sweet angel she is Ciao X()X()X()+

    January 10, 2014 | Unregistered Commentermary

    Hugs to you and your daughter!

    January 10, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterConnie McLeod

    Brianna sounds like an amazing person, Lisa, and I know she makes you proud. She is a beautiful woman, and obviously has a good sense of humor, as well as self sufficiency and compassion. She deserves the best!

    January 10, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterPat

    "Unsuitable suitors" dang, the world is full of them isn't it?? Glad y'all are taking the high road and being so civilized; boys around here know the crazy Cuban lady with the fierce fan flinging. Let me know if Brianna ever needs Tia BB to ::BOPASO:: ok? ; ) Continued grace and civility to you and yours. BB2U

    January 10, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterBohemian Babushka

    Both of you are so lucky to have one another, and learn from one another. Brianna sounds like a very special young woman, one we can all learn from.

    January 10, 2014 | Unregistered Commentersheryl

    I LOVE that plaque! I cried when I read it and then I read all the comments and I am a blithering idiot sitting here trying to type. During Jenna's teenage years I never thought we would get to the place we are today. We spent the most wonderful insane day at Costco, I feel so lucky that she is my friend and I am as proud of her as you are of Brianna

    January 10, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterGrandma Kc

    Thank you all for your kind words and your appreciation for my daughter and what she means to me. Thank you, too, for sharing what touched your heart this week.

    You move me, my friends. ♥

    January 10, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterLisa @ Grandma's Briefs

    This was a beautiful tribute to your amazing daughter. She must be so very proud to have you as her Mom.
    This week, my nephew wrote a lovely note on my facebook timeline, and it touched my heart and gave me a much-needed reason to smile. It's those little surprises that keep us humble and keeps going.

    January 11, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterTerri Sonoda

    This is such a beautiful testament to the real and warm relationship you have with your daughter. Everyone can see that you are her advocate as well as her supportive and loving mother.

    January 14, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterEstelle

    Lisa, another lovely post. Brianna can be assured that your mighty band of "followers" and "Likers" are also pulling for her after this latest setback. We are always and forever mother bears, aren't we? What touched my heart this week was sitting here looking at the photos of my daughter and her family--the four of them posed for some professional shots that are achingly beautiful and I wish I could hold that baby boy and hug that little girl again right this minute. The love between husband and wife, mother and baby, parents and children is almost palpable in these pictures. Sigh.

    January 15, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterRisa
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