​​To my introverted and sensitive daughter,

You got this beautiful trait from me, that I know for sure. What I don’t know is if I’m doing it right by trying to challenge you to build resilience while also respecting your emotional boundaries.

I’m doing my best to catch myself from saying things like, “Sorry, she’s just shy. Go say hi!” That is nothing to be sorry for. Take your time and space. I mess up too, I’m learning at the same time as you.

My little love, you feel each emotion so deeply.

From your timid tears when a new friend at the park approaches you too quickly, to the adorable squeals of laughter, and of course the rage of being twohow dare I forget that. 

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My arms will always be your safe space. I want nothing more than to shield you from this (sometimes) cruel world. But I know if I hold on too tight, you’ll miss the chance to fly your own course. I wish for you to have more confidence than I ever did. I pray you become a woman who can trust her intuition and rise from a fall.

But sometimes I feel like simply hoping is not enough. We can read all the parenting and children’s books about emotions and big feelings. We can have all the deep discussions.

But the scariest thing as a mama bear is actually letting you, my little cub, go into the world on her own. 

I promise to always keep my heart and arms open for you when you need a moment of solace and comfort. I also promise to encourage you through challenges so you can cultivate your uniqueness with pride. I don’t always know what to do or say. But I know I’ll keep trying to do my best as we figure this out together each step of the way.

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Please know your sensitivity is a gift, my little love, don’t ever let anyone tell you otherwise. You’ll shine bright with it, that I know for sure.

I’ll love you always,

Sara Shakil

I'm a mom of one, wife, teacher, and mental health advocate for South Asian women suffering with PPD. I also make funny and relatable mom reels on Instagram and TikTok. My story with postpartum depression will be published in an anthology in 2022 by "Another Mother Story" in the UK.