Thursday, September 22, 2011

A Letter to My Pretty Baby

Dear Audrey,

Since the minute you were born, we've heard a gazillion times how pretty you are.  Of course, we agree.  It's a parent's right to believe, and express, how perfect they think their children are.  We exercise this right.  We think you are the cutest darn baby we have ever seen.  We think your long hair is amazing.  Your laugh is worth all the money in the world.  Your smile melts our hearts.  Your Darth Vadar voice, it, my dear, is hilarious.  When people comment on how oh, so pretty you are, I feel happy and proud and blessed to have such a pretty baby.

But I also feel scared.

I'm scared that you will grow up and only be oh, so pretty.  I'm scared that you will hear those words more than any other and that your self-esteem will be based upon them.  I'm scared that you will seek compliments but never learn how to give them.  I'm scared that you will put your time and energy into being pretty, staying pretty, getting prettier, rather than into other talents or endeavors.  I'm scared that if you are as pretty as a young woman as you are now, people will judge you by your cover and not by your mind or heart.

Of course, as your parent, it will be my job to make sure that these fears do not become reality.  It will be my job especially, as your mother, to teach you that you are only as beautiful as you are on the inside and that intelligence, kindness, loyalty, humor and hard work are worth far far more than being oh, so pretty.  It will be your father's job to convince you to respect yourself, to never sell yourself short, and that you are  lovable and deserve to be loved - by men and women alike - no matter what. 

I don't know whether your dad and I are fully capable of doing all these things.  Only time will tell.  But, I do promise you this, we will do our very very best to nurture and encourage ALL of your talents so that you can be a well-rounded person.  You will always be my pretty baby. But, I can't wait for you to become my smart, kind, loyal, funny and hard-working baby, too.

Love you,
Mom

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