Wow, what a weekend!
First of all, Happy Father’s Day to all the father’s who follow this blog! What an awesome privilege and honor it is to have the role of being someone’s daddy!
You have been charged with a high task, but take heart, you have not been left ill-equipped to walk out this undertaking. God is with you! You will be amazed at the legacy you leave when you put your whole trust in Him to do what you cannot do and lead you where you need to go!
This weekend has been full for our family as well. My middle daughter, Layla, turned 10 yesterday! I like to think of Layla as our very own “freedom baby” given she was born on Juneteenth! Even as an infant, one of the nicknames I lovingly called her was our “Little Firecracker”. What I most admire about Layla is that she is true to her authentic herself. To know her is to love her. Layla is hilarious, creative, empathetic, charismatic, and full of light. People are drawn to her like a magnet. I’ve never known a person to meet Layla and not become instantly enthralled with her.
It was such a joy to reflect on these past 10 years the night before her birthday. For some years now, our family has grown into a tradition that we all now cherish. That night, the family will gather round and share words of encouragement and uplift to the birthday person. We will reflect on funny memories and share what we value most in that person. Then, we will lay our hands on that individual and pray for them as they enter into this next new year of life.
Can’t you see why I love it so much?
Many times, I feel tears come to my eyes as we reflect and speak on how that person has most touched our lives. It’s truly a beautiful moment.
This past Friday night, as we sat around Layla and shared our life affirming words to her, I sat and watched her smile, her goofy interactions that we have all come to love, and overall important role she plays in our family. Since she is one of our “middle kids”, I sometimes wonder if one day she will find herself on some counselor’s couch recounting all the ways in which she was made to feel like the “other” or an outsider as the middle child. I know that many times, unfortunately, the middle child gets stuck in that uncomfortable in between.
I know that my middle sibling may or may not have been made to feel that exact same way in our family as we grew up. Now, as an adult, I feel so bad for the ways in which we as kids and her siblings didn’t take the best care for her in this way. I’m grateful for the hard conversations we have had over the years. I’m thankful the Lord has opened my eyes to the ways in which I have needed to repent for adding to my sibling’s “Middle Child’s Syndrome”.
My prayer for Layla is that she will be able to look back over her life and know that she is a vital member of our family. I pray she knows down to her bones that we would be seriously lacking if we were never able to experience the gift of her life.
More than that, not only is she a Juneteenth baby, but Layla was actually born on Father’s Day!
And what a Father’s Day that was. I jokingly tell my hubby that his Father’s Day gift that year was Layla!
This year, we’ve been celebrating Layla all weekend long. From a surprise visit to a trampoline park and sleepover with her bestie then a surprise birthday party, this 10th birthday was epic! More memories have been made and not only that, all our lives have been made full. Today, we celebrate daddy!
It’s not an exaggeration when I say my husband is a dream y’all. I can’t imagine my life without this man. He has been and still is our family’s backbone. It is his existence in this family that has set the tone for the family ties we are forming. I praise God that Curtis Dunlap is a man who is sensitive to the heart of God. My husband has taught me how to give grace to people who may not necessarily deserve it. My husband has shown me how a kind word turns away wrath. He has lived out dependence on Christ and displayed an authentic sense of awareness of his humanity and thus his need for a Savior.
Whether you yourself are a father, or if you’re a son, if you desire to one day be a father, or sadly, have lost a father or son, my prayer for you is that you will have a deep sense of God the Father’s love for you. You are cherished, you are loved, you are enough.
Lastly, I’m excited to share new merchandise that I dropped over the weekend. In celebration of my daughter and my hubby, I’ve decided to created a special edition of the women’s wear I posted on my social networks yesterday.
Some of Layla’s best qualities are her bravery and the fact that she lives life so freely. Her favorite colors are green and blue. She actually requested green hair for her birthday! Check out her cute birthday hair style that I did for her at the top of this post!
This special edition of the women’s wear I designed for Juneteenth is called Layla’s Brave & Free Racerback Tee! For today and tomorrow only (the general public isn’t privy to knowing the sale will be available tomorrow as well!), you’ll receive 19% off storewide to commemorate Juneteenth + Father’s Day + Layla’s birthday, when you use promo code: FREE19!
Shop my store now for this awesome deal!
Enjoy and happy celebrating!