Letters to my daughter #1
I have a super awesome daughter who comes to me with questions and insights that make my heart feel a little too large for my body. I love her honesty. I love having the chance to explain things I've learned and have her listen to me - really listen. She talks about how she wants to have children someday and share these things she's learning with them and this bogglesBOGGLESboggles my mind. My first few years of parenting would have been SO much easier had I looked past next week or beyond my own nose. So besides being too smart for her own good, she also has a perspective I wish I'd had. Teaching moments blindside me - catching me off guard and scrambling to remember my own childhood and how my mom navigated that minefield. So I thought as a bloggity vehicle I'd incorporate a series of posts on lessons I wish I'd known and/or need her to know. You can join in - chime in, listen in, whatever. WonderGirl - this is for you.
#1. THIS IS BEAUTIFUL:
The world will tell you beauty really comes from a few inches smaller here, a little more skin showing there or spending a pile of money on designer-whatevers. If you look a certain way that attracts others/blends in, then you are beautiful.
This is what I will tell you: Your body is a temple. A wonderful, amazing but temporary temple. Never take for granted how amazing the human body is and how fortunate you are to have one that works so well. It is an amazing vehicle to navigate this mortal existence in, and in the driver's seat is YOU. Not this appearance that others see, but your soul, the daughter of our Heavenly Father who was ecstatic to come to earth, put this body on and learn all that you could. When your trip is complete and you return to your heavenly home, you get to take that pile of information, lessons and wisdom that you've gained. That's the whole reason why you are here.
The world will tell you that your beauty is here, on earth, and that it exists on your outside. I want you to know what true beauty looks like.
She risked life and limb to save others and never gave up, even when she was told she had no worth, beaten and had no right to act for herself. I look at this picture and see a woman who used everything she had to help her fellow men. THIS IS BEAUTIFUL.
At an age just a little older than you when she could focus on anything, she set her sights on education. She insisted that she be given a chance to learn, and was brutally attacked. And then got back up and kept fighting. THIS IS BEAUTIFUL.
Aside from her amazing achievements and humility, I also love that she was Polish and devoted to her roots, like your Grandpa K's side of the family. I love that I can see our Polish features in her face, along with wisdom and courage. THIS IS BEAUTIFUL.
Remember the story of the Little Red Hen and her friends who claimed "Not I!" when it came to helping her? How easy it would have been to turn a blind eye to the horrible reality of the Nazis and just focused on saving herself. Instead she risked everything for others - strangers. Saved thousands of children and gave everything she had to serve others. THIS IS BEAUTIFUL.
BE BEAUTIFUL. Learn everything you can, bring as much good into the world as you can, and give everything you can and the beauty will shine out of you like a blinding bolt of awesomeness. Let others know that you see their beauty. If you are always looking for the good in others, you will always have a reason to smile your beautiful smile. And the world desperately needs your smile!
When I think of beauty - this picture* sums it up:
Quiet acts of kindness while the world rushes past you. LOUD acts of kindness while the world whimpers past you. THIS IS BEAUTIFUL.
*I was racing all over the house last Easter morning trying to get everything ready for church and perfect Easter picture-ing and Thing 3 was laying on the floor yelling because babies want attention but attention is hard to give while you are trying to find a 4 year old's dress shirt and make pancakes - and all of the sudden, the crying stopped, and I saw WonderGirl leaning over him, singing to him. Thank heavens this picture came out, because I couldn't see through the camera... something in my eye, or something like that.