Monday, October 20, 2014

The 10 Things I Want To Teach My Daughter


As P starts to get older, I worry incessantly about teaching her the important things. You know, those things that I didn't get right. The things that I didn't understand as a young girl, teen, and young woman. Those vital ideas about what it is to be a woman, mother, wife, daughter. Those things that will make her character stronger and richer. The things that will make her better than her mom was at that age. I think about it a lot. I obsess over it. If you haven't figured out that I have an obsessive personality, then you have not been reading enough of my posts and you need to go back and refresh yourself. I get it honestly from my dad, and I don't necessarily think it is a bad thing to have. It is just a side effect of loving something or someone so much that you want to do it perfectly. All. The. Time.

Here are the things that I have been thinking about so far:

1. There is nothing that will make you more appealing to a REAL MAN than your mind.

The right kind of man will grow tired of your curves and various visual assets, and when he does it is your personality and your intellectual connection with will keep him with you. Not that you need a man to be happy. In order to form a lasting relationship with a man that will grow into a successful marriage and life together--you are going to need to be able to have more than a physical attraction. Therefore, you should not only focus on the materialistic side of things--you should put the most pride and emphasis on your education. It will take you a lot further in life.

2. You cannot rely on anyone else to make you happy--that comes from within.

When I was young--I bought into the whole fairytale. One day, Prince Charming will come and take me away from all of my worries. He would fulfill me and make me whole. That is a bunch of bull, baby girl. The only person that can fulfill you and your life is you. You have to be happy with who you are and what you have done in your life. If you aren't, then you will be unhappy no matter what. Another person cannot make you better. You have to rely on yourself for that. So, my wish for you is that you live your life with these words in mind. You live it with the fear of regrets, and try to avoid them at all costs.

3. There is nothing that you could ever do that would make me not love you.

No matter what happens. No matter how horrible the thing is that you have done. Nothing will make me stop loving you. Nothing. There is not one single thing that I can ever think of that you could do that would warrant me not loving you. I may be disappointed in you, but I will never stop loving you. With that being said--you can always come to me. Never be afraid to talk to me. I can't help you if you do not tell me what you are struggling with. I promise to try not to yell at you. Instead, I will try to calmly figure it out together. We are a team, forever.

4. You can be whatever you want to be--if you work really hard at it

I am not going to tell you that you can do anything just by wishing for it hard enough. That is not how you make good things come your way. You have to work hard. If you put in the time and work for what you want--then you will get where you want to be. If you want a good grade on a test, then you need to study. If you want to play an instrument, then you practice. If you want to run a marathon, you run daily. Nothing that is worth having will come for free. You have to put in the work. Do not expect to show up late to the game, and be the starting quarterback.

5. Don't be in a big hurry to grow up

It's true that being a grown up looks fun. You may look and me, and think that you can't wait to be your own boss, and be able to do whatever you want to do. Don't fall for that. There is no such thing. You can never do whatever you want to do. Being a grown up is much harder, and a lot less fun than being a kid. I promise. Savor your time to be carefree and to let me worry about all the rest. That is my job. Your turn will come soon enough.

6. Recognize how valuable you are

There will come a time that you will meet a boy. You may like him a lot. He may like you a lot. You may fall in love or think that you are in love. Promise me that you will recognize how valuable you are. Know that you are special, and that you deserve to be treated a certain way. He should open the door for you. He should speak kindly to you and about you to others. If he does not treat you the way your father treats me, then he is not the one for you. I warn you that there may be a boy or two who will tell you they love you when they don't. They may try to get you to give yourself to them when you are not ready. They may try to make you feel badly about yourself so that they can get what they want from you. Remember my words--you are worth waiting for. Know how much you are worth, and do not settle for anyone who cannot wait for you.

7. Pick the right kind of friends

As you get older it will become harder to find true friends. There will be some people in your life that will be nice to your face, but talk badly about you behind your back. These people are not worth your time. A true friend will be honest with you. They will tell you when you are being an idiot. They will support you through your struggles, and celebrate with you in your triumphs. They will be like sisters to you. The right friends will not push you to do things that make you uncomfortable. They will dance with you, cry with you, and love with you. Don't be afraid to cut someone loose who does not give back the friendship that you have given to them. You will have to put work into your friendships. You will have to do things that you do not really want to do to support a friend. You do these things because you will need their support too one day. Friends are second only to family. You need them, and they need you.

8. Family comes first

I understand that as you get older you will want to hang around your friends more than your family. It is natural. I just want you to remember than no one will ever love you the way that your daddy and I do. No one will support you the way that we do. So even if we are mean, and you think that you hate us--make time for us. Love us. Because one day you will lose us, and you will be willing to give up anything for just one more day with us. It will be too late. On those days you will need lots of memories of our time together to ease your pain. Make sure you have them.

9. Love your siblings

As I write this, you have one sibling, Dylan. My hope is that you will have one more. Regardless, treasure your brother. He can teach you a lot. He loves you unconditionally. Make time for him. Love him. If you cannot talk to us, then talk to him. He will help you. He will not judge you. If you have a little brother or sister one day. Be there for them. Teach them how to do things. Play with them. They are a gift for you. You do not have to grow up alone. You get to share your childhood with them as a playmate. That is very special, and not everyone gets to do that. I didn't, and I wish I had. When dad and I are gone--you will be happy that you have them.

10. Understand that everything I did, I did because I love you

There will be times when you don't like me. When you are angry that I wouldn't let you get your belly button pierced, or that I wouldn't let you go to a co-ed sleepover. In these times I hope you will know the reason that I am saying no. It is because I love you, and I want to prevent heartache in your life. I don't want you to regret any choices that I could have prevented. Yes, I understand that sometimes you will need to make your own mistakes, but please forgive me. Forgive me for wanting to keep you my little girl for a little while longer. Forgive me for not allowing you to figure it out for yourself at times. I do it because I have been there--I have experienced certain things, and I don't wish that for my baby girl. You are far too precious for me to let you learn the hard way with some things. Plus, if some little boy every hurt you--I would hate to have to kill him. Forgive me--for loving you too much. For holding you too close. Understand that I do it because I have been there, and it is not the road you want to go down. I promise


What types of things do you want to teach your daughter?

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