It is a very emotional day for me today because it is my baby’s birthday. Okay, she isn’t exactly a baby, but she will always be my baby. Where does the time go? Really, like where? It seems like yesterday she was learning to talk and walk, she was “exploring” the yard for treasures, and she was snuggling with her special blankie and wanting me to read her a bedtime story. Some days, I was so tired from work and all of the other extra activities that I would beg (almost bribe) her to just go to sleep without a story.
In those exhausting moments, we don’t think about our babies growing up and moving away. We don’t think about the day we won’t be together on their birthdays. We are just trying to get those kiddos in the bed, the laundry done, and the next day’s clothes ready.
Looking back with a few years of wisdom under my belt, I would have chosen reading her favorite bedtime book over folding and putting away the laundry. At the time, I was trying so hard to be this super woman–to prove to the world that I could work a full-time job, keep a perfectly clean house (ready at all times for a Southern Living magazine spread), be actively involved at work, community, and church…oh, bless! This list could go on for days. One thing I am thankful for is there was no social media at this time. I would have worked myself to death trying to be super and perfect because I would have had to post everything from what I made for dinner to the knobs on the furniture. (Seriously, my FB newsfeed is full of so many statuses of moms being super moms–from extreme birthday parties that are near Hollywood productions to family vacations that rival royalty. It is shear madness.)
If I could shout one message to the world right now, it would to put down the phones and enjoy time (real time) with your children and loved ones. Put down those phones (like put them away in your purse or on a shelf) and truly hold your kids in your lap. Not have them in your lap while sending GIFs to your bestie. Stop watching YouTube videos while at the dinner table. Talk to your kids. Ask them questions about their day, about their friends, about silly things….Laugh with them . Read a story to them (don’t ask Alexa to do it). Because one day, you will wake up, and your baby will be 22.
FREE ADVICE TO MY DAUGHTER WHO IS 22 AND MAY OR MAY NOT NEED MY MOTHERLY WISDOM.
“It is curious that physical courage should be so common in the world and moral courage so rare.” –Mark Twain
Standing up for what is right and what is moral and good is not easy. It will never be easy. You might be standing alone. You might be shunned or mocked (or trolled on social media) for doing what is right, but you must be the good in this world.
“Every brick they threw at me, I used them to stand on.”
There will always be someone throwing stones at you. Use them to build a strong foundation. Don’t let those brick-throwers get the best of you or get you down because if you do, those bricks will soon cover you. Don’t throw them back because when they go low–you go high (by building!!).
“You are unique. You have different talents and abilities. You don’t have to always follow in the footsteps of others. And most important, you should always remind yourself that you don’t have to do what everyone else is doing and have a responsibility to develop the talents you have been given.”
― Roy T. Bennett,
“Some people dream of success while others wake up and work hard at it.”
Never be afraid of something that is new or difficult. Accept the challenge. Show yourself that you can do hard things.
“If your dream is a big dream, and if you want your life to work on the high level that you say you do, there’s no way around doing the work it takes to get you there.” –Joyce Chapman
Keep doing the work to get you there.
“Whenever you want to achieve something, keep your eyes open, concentrate and make sure you know exactly what it is you want. No one can hit their target with their eyes closed.”
― Paulo Coelho,
“To really change the world, we have to help people change the way they see things. Global betterment is a mental process, not one that requires huge sums of money or a high level of authority. Change has to be psychological. So if you want to see real change, stay persistent in educating humanity on how similar we all are than different. Don’t only strive to be the change you want to see in the world, but also help all those around you see the world through commonalities of the heart so that they would want to change with you. This is how humanity will evolve to become better. This is how you can change the world. The language of the heart is mankind’s main common language.”
― Suzy Kassem,
“If you don’t go after what you want, you’ll never have it. If you don’t ask, the answer is always no. If you don’t step forward, you’re always in the same place.” –Nora Roberts
Happy birthday, my sweet, little Abigail. I love you more than words could ever express. I would give anything to read your favorite bedtime story to you tonight. *big hug*
Thanks so much for sitting a spell with me today as I wished my daughter a happy birthday. Remember time stands still for no one, there will always be dirty laundry, and those babies are little only once! Now, put that phone down and go snuggle on the couch with a good storybook *big smile*