Now is your time to shine and go into the world. Your father and I have spent your life time preparing you with lessons on how to be and what to do and where to go. We have modeled a life for you that was better than our up bringing. There will always be bumps and muddy ruts through the meandering highway of time and aging and maturity… Then one day you will turn back and look at your path and understand that you are doing it; not just that you are doing it, but that you were always doing it. You will look up and my heart is your home.
The best way for me to guide you is to follow your lead. In order to be a good leader dear daughter, you have to learn to chase. The pursuit of dreams is not a destination. Once you accomplish what you want, another goal always comes in to usurp your current title. Even if you stand in one place and move not a foot, not an inch, the world will swing and eventually you will face the sun. Don’t worry about your pace, it will come. Life is made of seasons. Life is long. You don’t understand now, but you will turn back one day and see my face and realize I followed you the entire time. You will look back and see my heart is your home.
So sweet daughter, I can share some lessons I have learned up until today, but it won’t be enough. There will never be enough time or money or love. We will always want more. We are built to desire and covet and conquer and repeat. When I was 16 I didn’t know I was pretty. When I was 16 I didn’t know I would use algebra everyday. When I was 16 I felt the world’s every current and tremor. When I was 16 I thought everyone secretly hated me. When I was 16 I thought I could never be as happy as I was. And when I was 16 I thought I could never be as sad as I was. And then life continued to come. Hours, days, years passed and suddenly I have a 16 year old girl. A reflection of who I always wanted to be at 16. When you see yourself, you don’t see what I do. You can’t. You are more than enough. I envy the precious woman you are. You will turn back and see my heart is your home.
I can hold your hand when you are scared and I can hold your heart when you are sad. I can ignore mood swings and I can bear the uneven torture that will continue to pass over you as you grow. What you have to do on your own is go and explore and be. I can’t do that for you. Life and the universe will teach you everything you need to learn if you listen. So dear daughter, go and jump and play and work and fall. Be brave. This is your time. When you turn back, your home is my heart and it’s always waiting. And remember, be kind. Make good choices (and some questionable ones). Say “I’m sorry” when you are sorry. Don’t apologize for other’s feelings. When you are sad it’s ok to feel that way. Smile as much as you can, it fixes a bad mood. Love as hard as you can. Dance. Sing. And when you turn back your home is my heart.