She’s got this little round belly and this confidence that just goes on forever. She sings at the top of her lungs and dances with complete abandon. Watch me! Look at this! I made this song for you! She is all that is beautiful and if you ask her if she is smart she will yell, “YES!” and then tell you all she knows, and some things she doesn’t. She knows she is funny and isn’t afraid to tell a joke, and even if no one else gets it, she will be the one laughing the loudest. If she wants a hug, she will just open her arms and know that arms will enfold her too. She knows she is loved. She knows she is precious.
She will always be beautiful to me. But I want so much, so, so much for her to keep this ability to see the beauty in herself. When she has lost her chubby baby belly, is that when she will start judging the way her body is shaped? At what point does the world teach her to lower her voice, her eyes, her head?
I want to wrap her up in her innocent self-love so that it stays with her always, so that she never, ever wonders about her own worth. I don’t want her to lose her golden-fine little girl hair only to gain her mother’s insecurities.
I can’t stop the world from affecting my child in ways that I will not always like. But I can show her every day a woman who is not afraid to laugh, to love, to sing loudly, and to dance with abandon. A woman who loves herself, as she is.
December 30th, 2013 at 6:22 am
[…] “I am Arya too, although I would rather be the Mother of Dragons. I *guess* one doesn’t just get to decide to be a silver-haired conqueror of nations who feeds dragons from her breasts. Dammit.” –Steph […]
December 30th, 2013 at 9:16 am
Love this, Steph. If there is anything we can do for our kids– especially little girls– its to model this kind of behavior. I want to punch my sister in laws in the face every time they criticize their bodies in front of my nieces (okay, maybe not PUNCH them, but you know). The easy joy and self-acceptance of a child is a wonder.
December 30th, 2013 at 10:06 am
I don’t always do so well at the whole “loving myself” thing, but I’m trying. It’s just, you look at teenage girls and even grown women, and they very rarely have that kind of exuberant idea of themselves. I don’t want to see that light go out in my daughter. I *would* like to see you punch someone; maybe not a relative, but….document that shit, mmkay?
December 30th, 2013 at 10:08 am
Haha oh, if I ever get to punch someone I’ll definitely make sure a camera is rolling beforehand!
December 31st, 2013 at 2:36 am
This is lovely. And if there is ever a reason to love ourselves, it’s to teach our children the same. Just imagine what we could do if we humans didn’t keep getting in our own way.
December 31st, 2013 at 3:11 am
Thank you! I agree completely.
January 26th, 2014 at 6:57 pm
[…] came across this beautifully written post by a mother observing her little daughter ‘s confidence and self-love as she unabashedly […]
January 26th, 2014 at 8:59 pm