Hi friends, 

I'm Mikayla

and this is my story...

Hey you.
i'm honored you're here

I struggle deeply with condensing thick stories.
And let me tell you, I have a dense novel within my ‘about me’ story that I have promised myself and God, that someday I will write.

But for now, here's what you need to know:

I’m Mikayla Dawn.
But not the one
I used to be.

The new one.

I’m married to my best friend, Justice Christian Chaparro.

Our story doesn’t have a fairytale beginning, and it wasn’t love at first sight. It’s been more of a romantic-comedy-drama-thriller-tragedy. If that was a movie genre. But it has, like all aspects of my life, been redeemed. (Besides, who wants Pride and Prejudice when you can have the mashup of The Notebook, Juno, The Shack, Twister, Redeeming Love, and Cheaper by the dozen)

Speaking of dozen- we have five beautiful children whom we absolutely do not deserve, but have been sovereignly gifted to us nonetheless. I never thought I wanted to be a mom, in fact, if I were better at ‘planning’, I’d likely not be. But here I find myself, and oh how I’m thankful I am.

Emagen Dawn

My first child. I had her in 2009 at the age of 16. Justice is not her biological father, but he is ‘dad’ to her. She was my very first new beginning that the Lord tenderly offered me.

Natalie Jael 

She was conceived while I was engaged with Justice, and because of the absolute disaster I was at the time- I almost terminated her life. But as God has consistently done my whole life, he sovereignly saved me from myself. Our spunky, sassy Nat was born just 4 months after our wedding day in 2014.

Beckham Jude

Four months after her birth, I found out I was expecting, again. (Don’t ask me why God decided a clueless idiot like me was going to conceive with such ease. Take that up with him lol) Our wild-at-heart Beckham Jude, came crashing into our life like a wrecking ball just 13 months after Natalie.

Valor Monroe

Was knit together and born in the chaos of 2020. He is the child who completely changed the landscape of our lives both in his life and through his sudden death, just 357 days later in 2021. He is the reason you are reading this.

Reverie Isla-Vale

Our last and most recent baby, who was unexpectedly conceived only 8 months after we lost our sweet Valor and was born on Christmas eve’s eve in 2022. She is balm to my wounded heart, and the sweetest merciful gift that we never ever would have known we needed.

All of these lives have shaped, refined, and brought me closer and closer to who I was truly made to be. It’s through their stories that mine has truly been forged.

I grew up in the bible belt of West Texas. Which fortunately for me, meant I was exposed to the gospel at a very young age. And unfortunately for me, it was distorted, watered down, and lost its shock value at a very young age as well. 

With a church on every corner, around here, calling yourself a ‘Christian’ was about as meaningful as calling yourself a ‘Texan’. 

I heard a quote one time that said, ‘The hardest people to reach with Christ, are those who already think they have Him.’ And that has been a theme I have seen lived out in the culture I was immersed in. 

Through my journey of my faith becoming my own, I wouldn't say that I’ve deconstructed, but rather, untangled lies, from truth as the Lord has relentlessly pursued my soul.

I remember feeling in my heart as a child that I was called. Though I didn’t know by whom or what- I remember hearing a distinct quiet voice deep in my spirit that said “I love you. Your existence matters. I have big plans for you.” It was calm, steady, familiar- like a friend.

I would grow up in a broken home and a rocky childhood trying to both muffle and answer that voice in all sorts of broken ways. Love, relationships, substances, striving, hustling, dream chasing, etc etc. 

But it really wasn’t until I was saved at 27 years old, after the birth and death of my fourth baby,
that I would really truly start to answer that calling genuinely. 

And now, it has taken 30 years for the truth that was planted within me to start to genuinely sprout through to live and breathe on the outside of me.

This is the part of the story in which you are entering. The 30 year old, much more refined, but far from complete Mikayla. The one that has finally come to the end of herself. (Although I’m sure I’ll find an inch more that will need to be scorched through the fire.)

I used to use all these gifts that God has given me, for personal gain. For striving. For earning my worth. For creating significance. For Mikayla.

But the Lord has been ever so fervently, consistently, kindly but firmly….
not allowing me to keep on being Mikayla. 

Through all that I’ve been through, I have been sharpened, refined, sifted, and purified. 

I thought all along that surrendering my life would mean losing myself. But it has been through losing myself, that I’ve found who I truly am. 

I put all of this off for a long time for fear of what this calling might require of me. 
And how not enough I truly am. 

I have, for a very long time, wanted the courage and bravery to be who he was calling me to be. And losing Valor, ironically…has birthed valor within me.

Fear has lost it’s grip on me.
My heart is pounding. Not with fear- but with joy. Excitement. Anticipation. 
Because for the first time ever, NOT living fully alive isn’t even an option anymore.
The Way, The Truth & The Life are beckoning me. 
And I choose to answer.

So all you see here, whether art, voice or words….are…

For his glory and my valor,