25 may, 2016
dear baby bird,
this week you turn 21. how did we get here, so many years later?
you scared the crap out of me when you showed up. total truth. i have a photo of me holding you in the hospital room, wrapped like a burrito & you can see what i am thinking…”how the hell do i do this now?”
no, you were not planned & this is no secret. i got knocked up by a man who would did not love me, which in turn means he did not want you. he didn’t want to hold you, name you, watch you grow up, run & play with you or get to know you. this is the worst part, because if he did he would know how wonderfully graceful you have become.
okay fine, by graceful i do not mean you float across the room like a fairy in a tutu. you are goofy, silly & have a sense of sarcastic wit matched by no other. you are not a dancer (you could have been). you are not the super star athlete (you could have been this too). you are incredibly smart & have studied ridiculously hard to get the grades which win scholarships & help young people get hired.
graceful to me means you can hold your own in an adult conversation. you are polite to your elders, even engaging the most elderly with a sense of respect & honor. you volunteer your time with those who need it, still searching for ways to do more. graceful means you dress in a manner which has style, class & beauty all your own. it means you love your friends & would take a bullet for them. graceful in describing you means you love with all of your heart, even the ones who might not deserve that love. graceful mean you love your god first & find his strength in the toughest of times.
so two decades, plus a year later here is what i wish for you.
i wish you peace, love & gratitude.
peace: i hope you find things which bring you pleasure & a sense of peace knowing they were given to you appropriately. that the work you do in life is worthwhile and fulfilling, not grinding away at a job simply because you think it is what you are suppose to do. hopefully, you will wake up each day knowing you are always doing the one next right thing. when your head hits the pillow at night, you are comforted by the fact you did all you could that day & it is done. this is the peace i wish for you.
love: it is a gift from god & you will cherish it, hold it close & give it to those who respect you & deserve your love. that you find the person who brings you the most joy & love because you are a priority to them, make a family with them building memories year after year. if you are blessed with children you will know love like no other, because you are my gift from god and i would not trade our crazy life together. when your head hits the pillow at night, you can rest knowing you are loved by god & your mummy very much.
gratitude: this is tough one. i pray you learn this young enough so you walk through your life grateful for all which comes your way. the good, the bad & the ugly, because in the end, it’s all in how we look at it. wake up each day grateful in all things, so to keep a clear mind. i did not learn this one early, but pray i have shown you by example. it is difficult some days to keep top of mind, even during the toughest times we should give thanks & practice daily being grateful. when your head hits the pillow at night, you can sleep peacefully knowing you are loved. (see what i did there?)
being 21 also brings with it great responsibility. similar to preschool when i would have you carry your lunchbox & you would say “it’s my ‘sponsibiwuty.” you are now responsible & adulting. yes, you can legally drink with your mother in bars (not that we should do this a lot…people will make the whole lindsay & dina lohan comparison). rather with being 21 comes the responsibility of not making an ass out of yourself in public. you grew up here. you say you want to settle down here. fine, just don’t get drunk here or with whom you work. poppy use to say to me “go to the conventions or parties of another industry to get drunk. people don’t know you there.” this is so true.
as an adult, will you make mistakes, duh. in this fast paced world in which we live, try your best to keep it out of photos/videos & shake it off within 24 hours. unless you truly hurt someone with your actions, people won’t remember. so try and keep the hurtful stuff to a minimum and you are golden.
darling, you are one of the coolest women i know & yes i am biased. we may not survive this entire summer with you being home without some bumps & ego bruising, but perhaps it will make for terrific stories we can tell your kids. you always manage to make me laugh in the end.
i wish you the happiest of birthdays, my sweet ladybug. you are a glorious human being & need to know the world is waiting on you to do marvelous things. do not hold yourself back and above all remember to “stay wild.”
i love you to the moon & back. i pray i didn’t screw you up more than the average parent. thank you for teaching me peace, love & gratitude.