Happy Birthday to my beautiful cousin,
You've blossomed into a beautiful young lady and I'm so proud to call you my little cousin. I'm so proud of you and all your accomplishments. I know I may not tell you enough, but you deserve to know that you're, "smart, beautiful, independent, and strong." All characteristics of a mature growing woman!
You've grown up so much and I can't believe you're about to enter high school. We're officially able to share clothes, gossip about boys, chit chat about friends, talk about what it's like being a girl, and believe me I know it's not all perfect! We also share the same taste in music, another plus.
You're like the little sister I've never had and I'm so proud to call you mine!
High school won't always be perfect. You'll meet great, awesome, and wonderful friends. You'll have friendships that will last lifetimes, and others won't even last a day. You'll have many "first loves" and many "crushes," but avoid them for as long as possible, because you don't want to miss great high school experiences for some boy! You'll also encounter bullies and "mean girls" who will absolutely be jealous of your appearance, personality, and strength, but please promise me, you will pay them no mind. These girls will pick at you for anything just to see you upset or depressed, but they're not worth your energy.
I had a tough high school experience and I don't want you to have the same. You deserve to reach every milestone on your own path and to enjoy the view. It won't always be "smooth sailing," you'll have some rough waves ahead, but the future will always be brighter. I promise, just when you think you've experienced "the worse," there's always someone who is experiencing "the worse" ten times harder. You're always welcomed to come talk to me, and believe me I have plenty of stories to tell you! You'll have your first crush, and trust me they're not worth your time. Your first high school love may break your heart, but know I'll be the first at your door with ice cream and sappy movies.
You deserve to have the support of an older sister and I hope to give you just that. You're a bright, intelligent, maturing adult and you're on a very wonderful path. Sometimes you'll have to decide which step on your path to take next, and I hope to be there to help you chose or even support your choice. You deserve the best advice and what advice is better than coming from another girl who lived it!
Remember you can excel at anything you put your mind to. Remember to not let words get to you. Remember you have choices, some big some small, but they have to be made. Most importantly, remember that you have an older sister who will always look out for you.
I'll leave you with this quote by Robert Frost, as you celebrate this birthday and enter a new chapter of this wonderful journey we call life,
"I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference."
Happy birthday to my little cousin and to many more.
Enjoy with love,
Your extremely proud cousin.