To My Children:
In a world where children feel eager and rushed to grow up, I hope you take your time. Enjoy your childhood, these brief, precious years. Before you know it, your favorite stuffed animals will be sitting on a shelf or in a box and you will be tending to bigger things; some will be great and beautiful things, others will not. So for now, show me the trick where you let go of your bike handlebar with one hand-you are so proud of that. Play in the dirt, spin around until you fall in the grass, fingerpaint, skip instead of walking, roll down the grassy hills that leave green stains, wear out the knees of your jeans, run fast, swing high, laugh often.
In this world that encourages an obsession with physical beauty, I hope that you are beautiful. So beautiful that people can see your beauty without ever laying eyes on you because your beauty radiates from the inside, and shines through your actions and words. Physical beauty will fade but inward beauty has the ability to remain, and grow throughout your lifetime.
In this world where success is often measured in dollar-amount, I hope you realize that your bank account can not reflect your value as a person. You. Are. Valuable. You deserve to be treated as such.
In a world where technology is right at your fingertips, I hope that you manage to stay present…that you enjoy walks on the beach and in the woods, that you tip your head back and close your eyes and feel the breeze. That you always take time to skip rocks on the water.
In a world where we always have our hands full, I hope you remember to fill yours with wild flowers sometimes. I hope your hands are never to full to hold a loved one. I hope you know my hands will never be too full to hold you.
In a world where our schedules are run by clocks, I hope you find time to slow down. To stay up late for meteor showers. To wake early and watch the sunrise. To stay in bed into the afternoon every now and then, just to listen to the rain fall.
In this world that sometimes seems harsh and sad, I hope that you have joy and bring joy, receive help and give help, feel peace and offer peace. Shine brightly. See people, not stereotypes. Treat others with kindness, stand up for what’s right. Be brave. See beauty, even when it’s hard to find.
In this world that is so preoccupied with looking young, I hope that you count your smile wrinkles before your gray hairs, and count your memories before your age-number. Your years will have built a vessel to hold your memories. So many of them beautiful. Keep adding to those beautiful memories, be intentional.
In a world where people have busy lives, I hope you remember to look through old photo albums. I hope you remember your childhood fondly. I hope you remember the big things like family vacations…but also the little things like lullabies and forehead kisses. I hope you remember to call home often and to come visit. I hope you always remember that you are loved.
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