My daughter went through a pretty traumatic time this past Summer. And though I tend toward the positive in my writing and posting, I have had this title in my queue for quite some time. Her dealing of all this tragedy has not been without its frustration (for both of us) and I expect we will be mucking through the fallout for a while longer. And while I probably won’t share a lot of detail about this ridiculously heart-wrenching, confusing, and just plain awful time, this post is a glimpse into who my daughter is and how what is going on is helping to shape who she is becoming.
My Daughter – 8 Things You Should Know
She is loyal. To a fault. My daughter will take up your cause and fight like it’s her own to the death. If you are fortunate to be protected under that loyalty, you should know, it’s strong and good and though sometimes a bit misguided, her loyalty is true.
She is honest. To a fault. My daughter gets this from me. Her honesty (and mine) is not always welcome. At 13, she hasn’t yet learned the value of staying honest but perhaps keeping her mouth closed, depending on the situation. We are working on that and I am seriously grateful that she feels she can speak her mind openly and without fear of judgement (only guidance in how best to share that honesty).
She has little filter. We all have voices in our head that should sometimes stay right there and not be spoken out loud. I must take a large portion of the blame for this (if it deserves blame), too. Not everyone is prepared to handle what comes out of my daughter at any given time. But she is learning as she grows.
She is confident. In most areas of her life, my daughter is incredibly confident. She knows what she wants and goes after what fuels her passion in ways that continue to amaze, delight, and yes, frustrate me at times. But her confidence, her sense of self worth, is also being developed as she grows and I am very confident that she will keep being confident in most of her life.
She is emotional. My daughter is one of the most dramatic people I’ve ever known. I chalk much of this up to her growth, age, and experience. But for those who aren’t aware of how emotional she can be, it can seem over the top and sometimes irritating. She feels – deeply, strongly, rightly. And she isn’t afraid to share it. Mostly.
She is an open book. For the most part, there isn’t a thing my daughter is unwilling to share. With me, her bonus dad, her friends. And sometimes to random strangers. I have always loved this about her. Though I fear her learning what it means to trust and be trusted will temper her need to share everything, I remain faithful that she will continue sharing as she grows, while learning that not everyone can be trusted to treat her musings with the respect they deserve.
She is trusting. This one has gotten her into some fairly substantial emotional stress at times. She trusts. She has grown up (so far) trusting. We did this. We encourage her to trust that what others do and say is true and worthy of that trust. It doesn’t always shake out that way, however. But that is also how she is learning who she can trust. Unfortunately, she has given her trust to people who didn’t have her back and don’t care who they hurt – with words and actions. I can’t fix that for her. It’s a struggle.
She is worth the struggle. For every silly thing my daughter does as she grows, there are 10 amazing things she does that blow my mind. And she is worth the struggle. From the moment I knew she was growing inside me, I knew also that my life had changed forever. While I am nowhere near the perfect mom, I do know that my daughter is worth every darn minute of every darn day. And yes, it’s a struggle. But she is more than worth it.
For those of you fortunate to know this person, this amazing daughter of mine, you know then, that she is not now and never will be, perfect. But I am proud of who she is becoming and happy to watch her grow into the amazing human I see happening before me. Living isn’t easy and I am hoping it is a long time before she has to go through anything like what she did this past Summer. She walked away from three very volatile relationships and for the most part, handled herself pretty well. I do worry for how this drama will impact her long-term, but we are working on that, too. It’s a process – messy, frustrating, and worth every minute.
My daughter. And now you know.
For the record: I have not spoken publicly about this past Summer, despite a continuing need for others to poke at the kid and me. If only you could see how worthless your efforts are to engage. Though I am teaching her to understand different perspectives (that sometimes – lots of times – it isn’t about her, exactly), she is learning the hard lesson that sometimes (whatever) just isn’t worth it.
And one last thing? Cheerleading is a sport. A full on contact, dangerous, worthwhile sport. I haven’t had to deal with a lot of the query (whether it is or isn’t…) but she is fierce when it comes to this particular passion of hers. And she is going places with it, too. Do I hope she eventually chooses a more sustainable career? Sure. But the path we are on now with her cheering will help guarantee her future, no matter what she chooses. She has also learned (besides the seriously physical aspect) leadership, teamwork, and focus – all good things on her way to adulthood.
Mags and Mom collaborate, check it out:
Of course they have to do with hair, lol. Stay tuned, we’re gearing up for more collaborations, coming soon!
To my daughter: I love you, Punks. Every single piece of you, good and bad. Keep on keeping on, some days will be better than others, and I am right here when you need me, always and without conditions. ♥