What I Want My Daughters to Know: Part I


“Then you must teach my daughter this same lesson. How to lose your innocence but not your hope. How to laugh forever.” Amy Tan, from The Joy Luck Club

As I become older, so do my daughters. It’s true when they say that you never stop being a mom. You never stop worrying, loving, caring, and praying for your kids. I don’t care if your oldest daughter is 35 years old, in the Marines and tough as nails. The worry never completely fades.

As a mom, there are things I’ve tried to teach my daughters over the years. 

1. I’m still Mom. Though our relationship may alter a bit throughout the years, I’ll never quit being your mom and all that entails. I will never stop worrying about your being in a car accident, or being sick, or having your heart broken. Even though I think of you as my best friends, sometimes when I see you watching television and twiddling your hair, for just a moment I see you as two instead of 23. And in that moment, my breath catches and I just want to protect you from all evil. But I can’t.

2. I only want the best for you. A few of these desires I hold for your future: a kind and funny husband, the most fulfilling career you can imagine, beautiful kids who fill your heart and a life without a single second of pain and suffering. These things I cannot promise. These things I hold as an ember of a wish in my heart at all times.

3. Sometimes, when I pray it is simply this: “Please God.” I know that I am probably one of the worst examples of a praying Mom for you, but that doesn’t mean I don’t pray. It doesn’t mean I don’t fall on my knees in front of the Father when you are hurting and beg Him to transfer your pain to me. I’m not always good at showing how I feel. But in all my lacking, Jesus waits. He is never lacking.

4. Even in the deep of the night, when your sadness seems unending, I am here. I never stop loving you, never stop needing you, and am always proud of you. Every single second.

5. I want to pass on a legacy of love to you. I want you to know that there is never a point in my life that I will stop loving you–or even love you less. Even when I can see that you are on the precipice of a disaster of your choosing, I love you. 

6. I hope all my mistakes have not shaken your faith. I hope you still know Jesus is here, waiting. I am human and faulty, but He is not.

7. I hope I have taught you humor–how to laugh, how to have fun–these are the best moments of life. I feel that the gift of laughter is one of the best gifts.

In all my imperfections, please remember this: in my nagging, I love you. In my silence, I love you still. 

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