To My Girls

First, can I just say that you’re the most incredible creatures I have ever met. It amazes me how effortlessly cool you are. I’m going to be so bold as to say that pretty much everything you do kicks ass. There are some things that bug me though.

I get impatient at your fear for trying new things. It bothers me when you take forever to put your shoes on after I’ve told you 234787332472 times that we’re running late and to hurry up. I don’t understand why it’s so hard for you to remember to put your dishes in the dishwasher.

But I still want to give you some advice, because I love you and I want you to continue to kick ass at life.

First, whenever I am impatient and demanding – don’t pay attention to me. Just block me right out of your cute little noggin and continue to do the things you do. You running around trying to find a different outfit for your Build-a-Bear before we go run errands is important to you – do it. Don’t you dare let me tell you what is or isn’t important to you. Let me throw a fit about schedules because that’s my problem with reality – not yours.

Second, you are a beautiful combination of me and your father. You have my eyes, you have your father’s nose. You’re absolutely beautiful the way you are. Just because your father and my genes combined to make this wonderful little body you are wandering around in doesn’t make you me or your father. You are your own person. You can like whatever you like. You can dislike whatever you dislike. If your dad thinks you should go to college and be a doctor well that’s what he thinks. You don’t have to think that. If I run around talking about the universe and yoga well you don’t have to buy into any of that either. You, my sweet child, are now a physical manifestation of a completely separate personality than that of me or your father.

Are you gonna like some of the stuff I like? Sure, but this is not required for my love and acceptance. Are we going to have battles between beliefs and preferences? Absolutely, but this does not mean you have failed me because you don’t agree with my opinion. You are YOU. Be YOU. And for heaven’s sake don’t ever let me, or your father tell you who you should be.

Society is gonna put a lot of pressure on you to be a certain way, or look a certain way, and even act a certain way. My only answer for this is: society says it’s ok to eat fake cheese you squeeze from a can. Society is full of shit.

The only person you have to please in this life is you. Don’t ever base your self-worth and self image on the thoughts of another. When you start building a self esteem based on the opinions of others you invite them affect you negatively, too. Compliments feel good. Acceptance feels good. Praise feels good – but this shouldn’t be something you build your life around. People are going to be mean. They just are. If it were up to me it would be socially acceptable to sucker punch someone who says something mean to you, but it’s not – so the best advice I can give you is – Who the hell cares what anyone else has to say about you – good or bad you’re still a bad ass.

Listen, dude. You’re new at this. This is your first time being a kid. Putting your dishes in the dishwasher, brushing your teeth, and taking care of business before you get in bed rather than getting up 17 times to go to the bathroom,  get a drink, ask me a question, tell me goodnight, ask for a hug, go to the bathroom again – all of this is hard shit to remember. Don’t be so hard on yourself. And don’t let me be so hard on you either.

Just like this is your first time being a kid, well this is my first time being a parent. I’m probably going to forget to bring sunscreen when we go to the park, I’m most likely not going to remember your friends’ names at school, I will most certainly be too tired sometimes for a bedtime story. This doesn’t mean I don’t love you, and I don’t care about you. It means I’m new at this, too.

You’re a kid. You’re an incredible one at that. You like things like Hannah Montana and wearing weird outfit combinations. Don’t ever apologize for these things. Just do what you love and love what you do.

I wish I could say honestly I don’t have any preconceived notions set up in my mind about who I want you to be. I want you to be happy and successful, but as you grow older your definitions of happiness and success may be very different from mine. It wouldn’t thrill me if you grew up to be a stripper – but I also wouldn’t love you any less if you did. (That being said, please don’t grow up to be a stripper.)

I know I embarrass you and I’ll even admit to making you feel bad sometimes. It’s never my intention to make you feel bad. Ever. Not one single moment since the day I met you have I ever wanted you to feel sadness. I want to teach you stuff, and show you some cool shit about life, and maybe sometimes those lessons come hard and with a degree of punishment. I hate punishing you by the way. It’s my least favorite part of being your mother.

I know that you want me to be proud of you, and I am, my little darlings. But here’s a secret you might not know about your mother. I want you to be proud of me just as much, if not more than you want me to be proud of you. Nothing in this world thrills me more than when you tell me I’m good at something or how pretty or awesome I am. Or as you sometimes put it “you’re”  It’s a pretty kick ass feeling to be

There it is. Whenever I am impatient or upset with you, remember that those feelings are coming within me. You still sparkle brighter than ever. Just like I should cut you some slack, cut me some slack too. We’re all new at this. I’m pretty sure if we can remember to do that we will get through this alive. No guarantees, but that’s what I’m hoping for. I love you beyond the ends of the universe. I am proud of you and I am proud to be your mother. Please don’t be a stripper.

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