I cannot even believe that you are seven. SEVEN! It's an odd thing to have a seven year old in my house. You get dressed, teeth brushed, hair combed, bed made and ready for school without my prompting. You set the table and help wash dishes. You vacuum and help your sisters. You have becomg strong, not just in the physical sense by participating on soccer and swim team and playing tennis and bike ridiing, but also developing a moral and intellectual strength that continues to amaze me daily. We have conversations about politics and books and history and science. You ask insightful questions and make thoughtful observations about the world you live in.
|Waiting for your first ski lesson. You love every aspect of it. Except finishing.|
At night, I stand at your bed to tuck you in. We snuggle and giggle and talk about leprechauns and fairies and magic. We talk about your favorite books and you ask if you can buy lunch the next day. We discuss your preference for leggings over jeans and how exactly the tooth fairy knows how to get to our house. Although I know I’ll forget many of these highlights, I also know I won’t forget the ones I need to carry with me.
|You had a "late-over" birthday party that included pizza, cupcakes and the watching of Moana with a few of your favorite friends.|
Last night we sat together flipping through a new book you received from your birthday: Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls. You wanted us to pick out a story together for you to read independently. As we flipped through the book we talked about feminism and what is means to be a rebel. We talked about having courage and being brave. We talked how feminism doesn’t look like any one thing but to support and encourage women and we defined rebel as someone who exhibits independence in both thought and action. You looked me straight in the eye and said that you were going to grow up to be a rebel girl. I asked you how you knew that, and you just simply responded: My gut knows.
And Daisy, here is what my gut knows about you: You’re sweet and kind and charming and smart and fierce. Since you were a baby you have always been one to observe first. And still now, you make sense of your world and the environment around you, quietly, until you see something that isn’t quite right. And when you notice it, you speak. You act.
It’s easy in this world to remain silent. I don’t know why injustice happens, but I know it breaks hearts and strangles spirits. And I know that we are meant for more. My gut knows.
Becoming a mother – your mother – a mother of daughters – has created a fire in me to speak to what I see. I know that I alone cannot restore the injustices in this world. I know I don’t have the power or the capability or the persistence to change the story, but as a believer in God. I believe He can. My gut knows.
And as His children I believe our job is to encourage. To speak the truths and to come alongside the broken and bruised and offer what we know; whether it’s a lasagna in a casserole dish or a slew of prayers or a tear-stain shoulder and always, always, with an open hand.
|On your actual birthday I came down with a stomach virus, so we had a "make-up" birthday a few days later complete iwth a six-mile bike ride and a frozen yogurt outing.|
There are many people who will see this as an empty, optimistic view. And without faith, it looks that way. But faith is something you have in spades sweetheart. You are a watcher and a thinker and a kind-hearted soul, and you’ve been filled with a never-ending supply of faith.
May your gut always speak loudly, and may your faith never remain silent.
I love you more than all the waters in the ocean and all the stars in the sky.