You are officially a teenager!!!
I can not believe just how fast you are growing up on me. I swear, it feels like it was just yesterday, when I found out I was pregnant with you. I knew from day one that you were going be my girl. I asked God for a daughter who is smart, caring, a bit sassy, and silly just like me. Believe you me, I got exactly what I asked for when you came along.
You have a big heart.
You are beautiful inside and out.
You have a huge personality that can lighten up a room.
You have a beautiful voice, and it brings me joy every time you sing.
Your laugh is contagious, and you make make giggle everyday.
As you start the next chapter in your life, there are a few lessons that I want to share with you. Lessons I feel that are important in guiding you over this next phase in you life.
1. Be Your Authentic Self. Just be your fun-loving, quirky, care-free self. There is a freedom that comes with being the unique person that God has made you to be. Know that, in a world where everyone is trying to fit in, you are you, and you were made to stand out. Stay true to who you are, and be whatever makes your soul happy. There is nothing like being you, and loving you just the way you are.
2. Love Yourself unconditionally. Understand that you don’t have to be perfect to be good. Nana always told me, “You have to love yourself before you can love anyone else.” I believe this to be so true. Love yourself. Respect yourself. Take care of yourself. So that you don’t chase after the wrong people who won’t love you the way you need to be loved.
3. Love your Body. See your own beauty without mirrors, compliments, and other outside influences. Strive to be a healthy person in a healthy body, not skinny. If eating a donut makes your happy then eat it with no regret. However, don’t forget to love your body by feeding it the nutrients that you need regularly to continue growing into the beautiful young lady that you are becoming. In return, your body will love you for it.
4. Your Daddy loves you! No man will ever love you like you father does. Know that he loves you with every part of his soul. That he will always be there for you, he will always protect you, he will always fight for you, and he will always love you. Always and Forever! Never forget that!
5. Keep Learning! Pay attention in school. Always ask questions. Continue to seek out knowledge and feed your brain. It’s better to know thing, and never need them than it is to not know them when you need them. Knowledge is important! Knowledge will get you far!
6. I’m here for you, Always! Don’t be afraid to tell me anything. I was a teen once. Long, long, long time ago :). You just may be surprised at how understanding I can be. I promise to always give you a listening ear, and to be honest with you.
7. It’s ok to make choices I don’t like. It’s ok when we don’t see eye to eye. We may get on each other’s nerves sometimes, but I want you know, deep down at the bottom of your heart, that my love for you will never change. Nothing you will ever do will make me love you any less. I will eternally love you regardless. I just hope that you make the choices that are right for you. Stay on the path that God has planned for you.
8. Instead of complaining, choose to be grateful. Why waste any of your precious time of negativity? You alway have have a choice in how you look at things. It’s all about perspective. Appreciate the little things, and be sincerely grateful for what you have.
9. Trust is important in any relationship. Once it is lost, it is very hard to get back. Always be True. Always be Honest. Always be Genuine.
10. Good, real friends are hard to find. Know the difference between a true friend and an associate. A friend will always be there for you. They support you, encourage you, and have your best interest at heart.
11. Don’t let other people’s opinions become your reality. Opinions are not the same as facts. What other say and think about you is none of your concern. The less you care about what others think, the better off you will be.
12. The ”love” you see on Tv is not how love works in the real world. Love makes you happy. It makes you sad. It makes you mad. It makes you feel like you are going crazy sometimes. Love is patience. Love is work. It the a lot of time, growth, commitment, communication, and trust to make love in any relationship to work.
13. Keep Going and Don’t Give Up!! Don’t tell yourself you can’t. Take that T off and dump that word from your vocabulary. You always can as long as you keep trying. Keep pushing! Never give up!
I have so many more things that I want to share with you. But for now, in honor of the magic number of the day, 13 will do. I hope that you are able to take some of these lessons, and keep with with you in your heart as you continue on the life journey that God has planned for you. I hope that if nothing else, you understand just how much your Daddy and I love you, care for you, we are here for you, and respect you. Know that we only want the best for you, and want to you be able to reach whatever goals you have set for your future and for your life.