Understanding our Daughters- A Letter to my Daughter

My darling, 

Now you are 3- but there will come a day when you will be a teenager. You will grow tall and even more beautiful and opinionated and then what? 

Yesterday I watched a movie- Ice Princess. Perhaps when you get a wee bit older we can watch it together. It is about daughters following their dreams and mothers understanding their daughters and misunderstanding their dreams. 

When I was growing up my Mom and I worked together, sewed together, cooked together, studied together, and grew together. But we did not dream together. 

My Mom never seemed to understand my dream to live in a foreign land and serve as a missionary. From the time I was 12 my calling or passion was clear to me. I heard a missionary speak about the need of English teachers to Chinese students and I thought, “I could do that.” Long before the seed of a servants heart had been planted within me as our Dad read us stories of great missionaries. 

And so I grew up. I finished our family’s home-school program. And I continued to dream. I knew I needed to study and I set my mind on attending a Christian college. I went against my Mom’s wishes and will. 

Four years were spent at that college preparing me with Bible classes and every other course required to get my B.A in Intercultural Studies. I spent my practicum in China teaching English one summer- and that dream came true. 

Then I graduated and wanted to fly away to fulfill my dream. After a year of working 3 jobs and some help from a kind brother I was debt free. 

And that is how I ended up here- as an English teacher. 

Through 4 years of college and the years in between coming and teaching and finally marrying here I struggled with my Mom not understanding my dreams. 

I know that she loves me- but I didn’t feel we understood each other. 

Now, as I raise you- my precious girl I want to be close you. I want to understand you and support your talents and dreams- no matter how different they might be than my own. 

Last night your Daddy and I talked about your futures. 

Some parents want their children to be famous musicians, or artists, athletes  or actors. 

We will never push you or your brothers to be that- unless you want it. 

Our desire for each of you is that you are well educated, and well balanced in  your learning. We will gladly give you music lessons and whatever else you need to understand your likes and talents. 

We want you to be a woman who had a kind and loving heart, we want you to know that you are beautiful on the inside and to take good care of this body God has blessed you with. 

We want you to pursue your dreams and talents in a healthy way and to do the things you love most. 

We want you most of all to know what this life is about and to know where you are going when it ends. 

We want you to live this life and this day to the fullest as you walk towards eternity one day at a time. 

We want to understand you, to love you and to support you each day of your precious life- our dearest daughter. 

– – – –

Note: I love my Mom dearly and in time we have grown closer. I know that she has wanted the very best for me and even though I have not done things the way she would have liked she loves me just as much as I love my dear girl.

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