Friday, January 31, 2014

Twenty-One Thoughts for My Twenty-One Year Old Daughter

This is simply not possible.  I refuse to accept it.  It cannot be happening, because in my mind you are still my little Babydoll.... that little baby girl I could fit between my elbow and the palm of my hand.   Yep, you made my heart grow bigger when I first saw you then and you, like your siblings, still do now each time you walk through our home's front door.

Happy Birthday, my daughter.  You have an awesome life ahead of you and the world truly is your stage.  So, as you turn 21 today and as my dimming parenting theater lights are moving from me to over to you, first let me share a few thoughts:

Twenty-one thoughts from a papa to his little girl

  1. Dream big and dream often.  Nothing ever comes from not speaking them into existence first.  God has an abundant life for you.  Go get it!
  2. "The Golden Rule" is still the best rule.
  3. Laugh and smile everyday.  Today is yesterday's gift to you.  Treat it as such.  A great way to begin each day is, "Thanks God!  So, what are we gonna do today?"
  4. Always thirst to do better than you think you can.  Failure often happens when the expectation bar is set too low vs. not high enough.
  5. Marry a beautiful Godly woman and treat her like the queen she is.  Wait, that advice is for your brothers... never mind.
  6. Read your bible often; especially The Gospels and Proverbs.  The author seems to know what He is talking about.
  7. Take risks.  Being too comfortable too long is just existing in a plush prison.
  8. Treat people with respect and expect the same in return.
  9. Be on time for your commitments.  Remember, "five minutes early is on time and on time is five minutes late" 
  10. Often the best solution is the simplest one.  Don't overthink a problem and hence making it bigger than it actually is.  
  11. Obey the law.  Until you actually make the rules, you still need to obey them.
  12. God sees you as a princess... and so do I.  Your kingdom awaits you, m'lady.
  13. Be a good steward of His financial blessings and learn the benefits of compounding interest right now.  As in today.  Your seventy-year-old self will thank you.
  14. Don't get caught up in what other people think about you.  They don't know you as well as you do.  Seek the wisdom of people worthy of your respect.  Flush any opinions worthy of flushing.
  15. Watch out for boys.  I told you this years ago and it still is true.  And just remember that in my book, one might actually be acceptable one day, but not one will ever be good enough for you.
  16. Speaking of #15.  If a boyfriend doesn't treat you like a queen now, he won't treat you like a queen later.  Kick him to the curb immediately and move on.  Trust me on this.
  17. Jesus is THE ultimate trendsetter.  He is one cool guy.  Continue to get to know Him and life will go very well for you.
  18. Never stop learning.  Continue to invest in your mind and you will never be poor.
  19. Take A LOT of photographs, as in a scad of pictures.  Life is worth remembering and photographs allow you to relive those memories in an instant.
  20. The human body is an amazing creation.  Treat it as such.  Respect yours and demand others to do the same.  It is the most amazing gift you will ever own.
  21. Moms are amazing and you have had two moms that love you so very dearly.  I am pretty sure that means you must be very special.

If I could give you one more, a kind of 'one to grow on', it would be this... I love you, my Babydoll.  I did then, I do now, and I always will.   (Yes, my eyes are swelling as I type this and I am having a hard time finishing the sentence.)  

You are a very special young woman and I am so very proud to be your father.  While I know you are not a little baby girl anymore, please know you will always be so to me.  

As you spread your wings to begin to fly, please be sure to stop in from time to time to say hey.  I will always have a big papa hug waiting for you.