I Helped You Pack - For My Daughter on Her Wedding Day

I helped you pack your suitcase 
For your overnight at Nanny’s. 
And I helped you pack your book bag 
For the day of school at Granny’s. 

I helped you pack your Lillie bear, 
Because you’d grown too old. 
And I helped you pack away, 
Tiny mittens against snow’s cold. 

I helped you pack your little-girl bed 
And exchange it for one bigger. 
And I helped your pack your sleeping bag,
Full of pine needles and chiggers. 

I helped you pack your Barbies 
For a sleepover at a friend’s. 
And I helped unpack them too, 
When you came home again. 

I helped you pack towels and bathing suits 
For a swim meet far from home. 
And I helped unpack your ribbons, 
And the medal cold as stone. 

I helped you pack your Sweet 16 
Party games and food. 
And I helped unpack the memories made, 
For all of them were good. 

I helped you pack your cap and gown 
With your diploma case. 
And I helped you pack your college letter 
And roses from a vase. 

I helped you pack your closet’s clothes, 
Dishes, shoes, and books. 
Stuffed to the top with college stuff, 
The van held everything we took. 

And now I sit and help you pack
Pretty glassware and bedding. 
Picture frames and fluffy towels, 
All gifts for your wedding. 

I slip a photo in between, 
A note, a kiss, a prayer, 
And wish the packing up 
Wasn’t happening here. 

And as I pack the crystal, 
China, sheets, and glasses, 
I’d like to pack the time that flies 
And how quickly childhood passes. 

I’d pack a summer more of fun, 
Of swim team and of races. 
I’d pack another family trip, 
And awkward days and braces. 

I’d pack a winter full of books, 
And reading on the couch. 
I’d pack a springtime full of sun, 
And reminders not to slouch. 

I’d pack a week at Edisto, 
And one more trip up North. 
I’d pack away a wiggly tooth, 
And first grade and the fourth. 

I’d pack a push on the backyard swing, 
And a boat ride on the lake, 
A sandcastle at the seashore, 
A lumpy cake to bake. 

I’d pack in one more memory verse 
To help you know what’s right. 
And I’d pack a class in self-defense 
To keep you safe at night. 

I’d pack a hug, a hope, a dream, 
a prayer whispered soft. 
I’d pack my heart, my love, my life, 
My trusting gaze aloft. 

I’d pack it all, and myself too,
If there was a way. 
To send you off into your life, 
And still to help you stay. 

But that’s not the plan our wise Lord 
Designed for leave and cleave. 
And so I trust that he knows right 
And ask in faith, believe. 

"Lord, keep my little girl by your side, 
And keep her in your care. 
Help Josiah cherish her 
In dark days and in fair. 

"Pack her days with health and fun, 
And friends who love her dear. 
Fill her home with peace and love,
 And help her never fear. 

"Lord, pack her heart with joy and faith, 
And love enough to share, 
Keep her marriage strong and true, 
 Despite the burdens it will bear. 

 "And thank you, Lord, for giving me 
The chance to love her deep 
And pack her life with your good gifts, 
Entrusting her to you to keep."

Happy Wedding Day, Baby Girl! 
Prayer for the Home by Fernando Ortega
(If you're reading by email, click HERE to view the video)

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  1. Julie D6:10 PM

    Wiping away a tear as I read beautiful!! Fernando Ortega is one of my absolute favorite Christian singers. His music has seen me through some incredibly hard times. Love this song.

    Many blessings - Julie

  2. sherryfleck7:29 PM

    How beautiful...made me think of the day that I will have in the quickly time goes.

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  5. Thanks for this. It is a great reminder to young moms to enjoy our kids now. I guess my kid's marriage day will be bittersweet. Tearing up as I speak.....

  6. Beautiful poem to your precious daughter. Oh, how I remember those days!

  7. Oh my, did you WANT to make me cry???? So lovely! My precious firstborn son is getting married in a few months and I can hardly believe it. Where did the time go?

    We love the girl he's marrying but still, I would make a few more childhood memories if I could! :)

    Also, "Making Your Home Sing Monday" linky party is live and waiting for your posts!

  8. Wow, I never noticed the picture the first time I read this. Maybe my computer wouldn't let it show up. What a sweet picture, love how they're wiping their eyes. My son has asked my husband to marry him and his fiance and my hubby has married lots of people and never cried, but he KNOWS he's going to be holding back the tears at our son's wedding!Thanks so much for linking up to the "Making Your Home Sing Monday" linky party today! ;)

  9. lorihatcher9:31 PM

    You still have time -- HURRY! And hug him every chance you get, whether he squirms or not :)

  10. lorihatcher9:33 PM

    Nan, if you look real closely, you can see me in the front row on the left doing "silly noses" with the flower girl to keep her quiet :) Not exactly reverent during the prayer, but you do what you have to do to keep a 15-month-old quiet!

  11. lorihatcher9:33 PM

    You just don't know, Alison. . . bittersweet. Hug 'em tight, even when they squirm!

  12. lorihatcher9:35 PM

    Me too, Julie! I interviewed him late last year. Like Laura Story, his faith walk hasn't been an easy one, which is what gives their music and lyrics the depth unlike many musicians who've had an easier time of it. They've wrestled through and found God enough.

  13. That is a sweet poem and sweet picture with everyone wiping their eyes. Thanks for linking u

  14. Awwwww! I love that, so sweet! They are still in the planning stages so I don't know the wedding colors yet or if they're having a flower girl or not. I'll have to ask, lol! Thanks so much for linking up to the "Making Your Home Sing" linky party today! :)

  15. Pamela Kuhn10:47 AM

    Oh, how beautiful. One of my daughters is married so I could relate--and empathize! First time to hear this song. The words are amazing.

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