A letter to my daughter on International Women’s Day….
With International Women’s Day coming hot on the heels of Mothers’ Day, it got me thinking about women, about mothers, about daughters. There are so many I things I could say that I wanted for Mothers’ Day. So many lovely material goods that would be very nice indeed thank you – but not needed. Instead, what I really want, is something for you.
I wish for your life to be filled with people who make you stand tall, and those who lift you up when you can’t; I wish for there to be sunny afternoons with friends, and rainy days in front of the fire with me; I wish for muddy ankles and wind-whipped cheeks; I wish for shared laughter and shared sorrows; I wish for good days when everything goes your way and you fall into bed satisfied and content; and for bad days, when things are tough, but there is someone at home to hold you and make it better.
I wish for you to know that being kind is cool, and that being popular isn’t everything; that working hard at something doesn’t make you a nerd, it makes you a genius. I wish for you to always be able to tell me when things are bad and when they’re good, and that it’s ok if sometimes you don’t even know the difference. I wish for you to celebrate the odd ones out, the mavericks, and the outcasts; to be bored by the ‘ordinary’ and excited by the ‘different’.
I wish for you to know how unbelievably beautiful you are, and that this has absolutely nothing to do with the size or shape of anything – except your heart. I wish for you to know that your body is your own, and absolutely no-one else’s, and it is totally up to you what you do with it, and when. I wish for you to know that if people really love you, they’ll respect the things you say, even if they don’t agree with them. And that you’ll have the passion and courage to trust your convictions – they are, after all, your convictions.
I wish for an old friend that knows everything about you; and a new friend who is yet to discover you. I wish for big adventures in foreign lands and bold adventures in your own imagination; I wish for singing the words loudly at concerts and being quietly mesmerised in art galleries. I wish for books so loved the spines are cracked and songs played so much you can sing them backwards. I wish for you to experience the joy of running fast down a hill and quickly into the sea; the sheer abandon that comes from jumping into puddles and standing still in the rain.
And I wish for a peaceful world for you to grow up and live your life in; I wish for a planet that can withstand whatever we might carelessly wish do to it; I wish for more people who love, than people who hate; and for more people who are brave, than who are cowards.
And, most of all, I wish for you to know, that whatever happens, I am doing my best, however wonky that might look at times, and that’s really all that anyone can do, my darling,