Having a daughter is nothing like I thought it would be.
You see, the moment that the doctor screamed, “It’s a girl!” all I could picture was ribbons and bows, shopping trips, and princess movies.
And while I have enjoyed choosing a matching bow to go with her dresses, and admittedly walking with her through a store is a load of fun . . .
Being a mother to a daughter is so much more than that.
It’s repeating her worth to her. Over and over (and over) again. It’s repeating it so many times that she gets tired of hearing it, in hopes that she’ll never forget it.
It’s reassuring her that she is capable. Capable of whatever she decides to set her sights on. Capable of skills that others will attempt to diminish just because she’s a girl. Capable of achieving dreams, goals, and desires that would not only break glass ceilings—but would shatter them.
It’s showing her that she is strong.
Strong in physical ability, strong in emotional ability. Strong enough to carry in the groceries herself, while being strong enough to tend to the hearts of others. Strong enough to walk through a world that will doubt her strength—with a head held high, and one mean handshake.
It’s encouraging her heart to have faith. To have the knowledge that she is never alone. To be able to sit when life is heavy, and know that she doesn’t carry her burdens without help. To be confident enough to have trust in her choices, knowing that she is being guided along the way. The ability to place her hand over her heart, and know that she was given that rhythmic beat for a reason—a belief that she is here for a purpose.
It’s reminding her that her body is a vessel to be loved, respected, and adored; that it is not to be used, abused, nor taken for granted. Telling her that it will grow hips and courage. Stretch marks and bravery. Wrinkles and strength. And reminding her to never look at it as anything less than the (beautiful) temple that it is.
So, no, having a daughter is nothing like I thought it would be.
It is so (very) much more.
This post originally appeared on Love Always, Heather