On the eve of my daughter’s 10th birthday, I decided to write her this letter. Why? Because I never want her to have to guess how much I love her. Yes, I say it daily, give her lots of hugs and kisses, listen to her, attune to her needs, work on building a secure connection with her and repairing any hurts that inevitably come up. I learned over the past few years that one of her primary love languages is gifts, so I wanted to boldly speak her love language and declare to her in this gift, what’s overflowing in my heart.
*Self-Reflection Question! ‘Mama, what’s your child’s love language? And how can you convey your love to them in a new and meaningful way within the next 24 hours?’
My dear child,
I studied for your arrival like it was a test I was going to be graded on. I took every class I could think of, listened to CDs, researched online, read countless books; did everything I could because I wanted to do this right. I wanted to be prepared, to receive you into this harsh world with gentleness and grace, I wanted to protect your mind, body and soul. I wanted to nurture you, nourish you and lavish you abundantly with love. I’ve tried to be the best mom I could be for you. Why? Because you deserve it. Not for anything you’ve done, but simply because of who you are. My wonderfully and beautifully made child.
I didn’t have a personalized written guide to take me step by step on this journey of raising you. The books I poured over gave me hints about how to see you, but they were just charcoal sketches and you were pastels and acrylics, light and shadow, clear and nuanced lines, you were fascinating; you are captivating. Some days, I don’t feel worthy of the task of raising you because you are so brilliant and I worry that I won’t get it all right. And guess what? I won’t get it all right. But I’m trying my very best and it’s enough for me, because it’s clearly enough for you. You’ve never asked for perfection, but you’ve always been open to my love. So I give that love in abundance, flowing, fierce and free to you, my phenomenal little one. It’s only when I tuned into my own inner essence and was led and guided by my ultimate guide, the ultimate Creator, that I saw new perspectives, heard whispers of direction, and felt nudges of gentle guidance showing me how I could love you better. As I did my own inner work and grew more expansively, I was able to offer you space to breathe, stretch and grow healthy and strong too. I love watching you thrive. I love watching you. I love you.
- I love your kind heart.
- I love your creativity.
- I love your innovative mind.
- I love the way you courageously hang from tree branches.
- I love the way you smile brilliantly big, and with abandon.
- I love the concentration on your face when you’re reading a book.
- I love looking at your lashes resting on your cheek when you sleep.
- I love how curious you are, and how open you are to asking questions, and grasping new concepts.
- I love that you know you can be many things all at once, silly, serious; cute and ferocious.
- I love that you march to the beat of your own drum.
I love you for who you are. I see you, and I think you are absolutely great. You matter to me. You are a good person and I’m the lucky mommy who gets the privilege of taking care of your wants and needs, and keeping you as safe as I possibly can. I get to walk through life with you, laugh with you in the funny moments, cry with you when things are difficult, and hold space for you when you just need to figure it out on your own. I am grateful for this gift of raising you and walking on this journey with you.
You are now 10 years old. A decade breezed by so quickly, and so I’m savouring these moments because I know that the next decade will pass by just as fast. When you were a baby I found myself imagining your first steps, preparing for your first foods; researching for your first day of school. But right now, I’m not thinking about the next steps, or what will happen in the future. I’m content to sit here with you, and be present to the person you are right now, in this moment. I’m happy just to marvel at how wonderful you are, and how thankful I am to be your mom.