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Lara grows up to be a bride - movie
Lara grows up to be a bride


A Message from Mom

To Lara Marie on the occasion of her wedding.
by Mindie Burgoyne

Posted April 2007
Written February 2005

Lara Marie age six - Halloween Lara Marie age 21 - Her wedding day

I’ll never forget the first time I laid eyes on Lara. She was about fifteen minutes old and just a little over six pounds. I had never seen anything so beautiful or so perfect (except maybe her brothers). Times were hard for us then. I wondered how we would survive as a family. When I was expecting Lara I worried so about adding one more mouth to feed, one more body to clothe, one more child to shelter … but somehow I was able to cling onto enough faith to trust that God would provide for us.

The great revelation was that God not only provided enough to sustain us, He provided us with unexpected prosperity. Lara was – and is - my constant reminder of the rewards that come when you trust in God and try to live according to His purpose.

I knew from the first time I held her and touched her perfect little fingers that she was special. Inherently I knew that the joy and wonder I felt at our first meeting in the hospital recovery room would be repeated again and again throughout our lives.

Lara rarely cried, always smiled, adored her brothers and attached herself to me at the hip imitating everything I did and said. When I scan my memories of my little girl growing up I recall her at age four standing beside my bedroom vanity smearing lipstick and eye shadow on her little face. (she never got over that passion).

I recall her first day of pre-school when she was so upset about leaving me that she threw up in my car - then two years later, her sad face sitting across the breakfast table in her St. Louis uniform wearing her hair in a French braid sadly eating her cream of wheat before she was put on the bus for her first day of kindergarten.   She never wanted to leave me – and I have to admit – I didn’t want to leave her.

When she wasn’t my shadow, she was following her brothers. Though the boys teased her unmercifully with stunts that included shoving a dead bird in her face just for the “scream factor” and rigging the scrolling marquee screensaver on the computer to say in large letters … “Lara is a hairy beast,” she couldn’t do without their company, their protection and their presence as older siblings. To this day, she and her brothers share a single identity in one another’s company, and those boys still take care of her when she needs them.  She chose the two of them to escort her down the aisle on her wedding day.

Very few people know that Lara was deathly afraid of the dark until she was well in her teens. I would allow her to leave the light on in her room all night, and also allow her to climb in bed with me ONLY after she retired in her own bed. Each night she’d come crawling through the dark halls of our home in the wee hours of the morning to sneak into bed with mom, I’d always welcome her … I couldn’t refuse.

In the early evening I’d watch television in my bedroom and Lara would come in and lay down with me. When she’d start to fall asleep I’d tell her to get in her own bed. She would always pretend that was already asleep and couldn’t hear me. Once I asked as I caught her faking sleep, “Lara when you get married, how will we tell your husband that you have to sleep with your mommy beside you at night?”

Without missing a beat she replied from a fake sleep, “I’ll be over it by then.”

“Then” is now and the years have flown by. My baby is putting lipstick and eye shadow on strangers for a living. And she is transitioning from being my little girl to being David’s wife. It’s a bitter-sweet step for every parent to watch, but Lara’s life continues to evolve and repeat the pattern of reward and blessing. When choosing someone to care for a precious daughter, who could ask for a finer young man than David English?

All during the time my children were growing up I prayed for their spouses – yet unknown to us – I would pray that God would choose a good mate for each child and would bless that spouse wherever he or she was - keeping them safe, healthy and strong until they married my child.

I always sensed that God would send someone special for Lara. David is more than I could have hoped for. He’s intelligent, dependable, honorable, hard-working, organized, and enthusiastic with a zeal for life and a vision for the future. But most important, he adores my daughter and I believe he would lay down his life for her, and in return I’ve seen Lara grow into a giving, loving person who can sacrifice and endure tough times of separation and compromise because she loves David.

David’s own name means “beloved” a meaning which appropriately reflects his “new” presence in our family. He’s such an easy guy to love. Dan and I are grateful that David had such a loving nurturing family to help shape him into the fine young man he’s become.

I drive up and down the Eastern Shore all week long with my job. I pass by million dollar water-front homes and expansive farms that cover hundreds of acres. Sometimes looking on that amount of wealth is overwhelming and I’ll wonder, “How must it feel to have the kind of money that purchases these kinds of homes and land valued in the millions?”

I wonder if any of those rich people have a daughter like Lara.
The old rhyme, “If wishes were horses then beggars would ride” rings true. But if wealth was measured not by possessions, but love, laughter, comforts of family and home, and children who make their parents proud – those rich people have nothing on me. Lara Marie is the special treasure that crowns our fortune… and now Dave brings a fresh vigor to the mix. We are indeed wealthy.

The marriage of these two fine young people brings a new optimism, hope and vigor to the Santi, Burgoyne and English families. May God bless and keep them both, endow them with the wealth of children and a happy home, and keep them close by a mother who finds joy in the simple pleasure of being in their company.

Lara grows up to be a bride - movie
Lara grows up to be a bride


Copyright 2006 -2017 by Mindie Burgoyne  All Rights Reserved. 
No material may be reprinted or used without written permission.