A toast to Ryan and Starr

I am both so privildged and overwhelmed to be the only parent here tonight. I can’t let this opportunity pass without acknowledging that this moment would not be possible, Ryan, without your dad who would have loved ever moment of this whole entire year. It is because of his deep love, devotion, hard work and constant provision for us that any of this is even possible.

Ryan, your dad would have been so giddy happy today that I’m not sure any of us could have stood it! I want you remember one of the many times you and I butted heads and dad said something to you like , “But that’s the love of my life you’re talking about.” I hope that you are beginning to understand that comment and will, like the example your dad sat, always treat Starr like the love of your life.

Starr, I didn’t get to meet your grandparents that raised you, but I don’t have to know them to know how very happy they are for you today. We don’t get to pick the family we’re born into and you may not have had a fairy tale beginning, but we waited a very long time for you, we’ve prayed for you for many, many years, so long that when Ryan was little it creeped him out when I prayed for his wife. but I always knew you were out there!

I pray your life verse will be 1 Peter 4:8 “Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.” And trust me – there will be lots of sins that need to be covered. As an old woman I can tell you that the beginning of your love story was beautiful and the end will be tragic and terrible because all stories do end. But what really matters is what you do with what’s in between, the life you build together and the impact that you have on those around you. It’s up to you to make the world a better place by creating a beautiful family whether that’s a family of 2 or 20 your family is foundational to society and such a joy to get to be a part of.

I Love you both more than words could ever explain.