Three years ago, I wrote a love letter to my daughter.
A love letter to my youngest child.
My only girl, who was just entering into the teenage years. Interestingly, the love letter that sat in the recesses of this blog, and had been seen by around 100 pairs of eyes before 2019, has somehow found some readers this year. In fact, it is my top viewed blog post so far this year, surpassing 3,000 views in this year alone.
And now, that daughter stands at another rite of passage.
Turning sixteen, for me, meant that I had entered into that space of no longer a child, and yet, not quite an adult.
I now had a driver’s license and that meant a new level of independence.
A chance for more
We, currently (i.e.-Virginia, no longer Florida), do not live in a state where you can drive independently from the moment you turn sixteen, but you can three months later. And so, I still look at the moment of turning sixteen as the threshold of a new level of moving toward adulthood.
I have been in a season of life where words seem to elude me. I sit to write and they do not tumble out as freely as they might have in the past. Perhaps they would spill forth were I not encumbered by doing instead of being. Or maybe, which feels like
And so, Miss Sunshine, here is my love letter to you.
That’s how long it’s been since the moment that I first looked into your eyes. I know that may sound long to some, but really it’s not. It’s really the blink of an eye (according to us old folks…you know… the ones in their early 40s).
I loved you before that moment, of course, but the eyes will always share the truth. At the moment we met face-to-face, I looked deep into your eyes because I wanted you to see the depths of my love. The unconditional love I hold for the lives that I helped create. A love that knows no bounds.
I breathed you in. I held you close. I knew that you would be my last. My final response to the call of motherhood.
Your brothers came to see you, excited to meet the one they’d been talking to for all these months. Did you recognize their voices? I’m sure you did.
I watched you explore the world. Your
Carrying around your treasures.
I remember walking along the shoreline when you were small. Me, looking for unbroken whelks and scallops. You, overjoyed by the imperfect.
Teaching me lessons.
About finding beauty in it all.
You teach me lessons still.
I watch the young woman you’ve become.
The one who knows her needs and doesn’t feel a pressure to conform. The one who chases her passions and knows she is strong and capable.
I hope that self-doubt never creeps into your life. It is a vicious lie that we can tell ourselves. That we are not worthy. That we are not enough.
You ARE worthy.
You will ALWAYS be enough.
No, we are not all created to do the same things. If we were, life would not be the beautiful tapestry that humanity currently weaves. However, far too often, we let the world around us begin to tell us who we should be, could be, if only this and that.
Instead, I want you to
And I want you to never stop dancing.
I love how you can’t ignore a good beat. How the music finds its way into your very being and encourages you to move.
I still wish that I could slow
I feel so blessed to be a part of your journey and it fills my heart that you chose me to be your mother as you’ve navigated this phase of your path.
May we ever continue to giggle at silly inside jokes during soccer tournaments and may you forever grow into the outstanding woman that you came here to be.
May you never forget that your uniqueness is exactly what is needed in this world. And most of all, may you never forget that you are unconditionally loved just because
I would, from now until an eternity into forever, choose you…again and again.
Happy Sweet 16 to the girl who came into this world to disrupt, to teach, and to share with me everything that I thought about being a female in this world.
You are that itsy, bitsy spider that I sang to you about each night in your childhood.
And just like that spider, you never let a little rain keep you from your goals.
Thank you for being the sunshine that dries up all the rain, and
I love you, Miss Sunshine!
Let your light shine!
Amy (aka Mom)