I decided to write a letter to my daughter on her birthday because time is slipping through my fingers like sand. I’m watching my firstborn become a woman – right before my very eyes. There are so many things I have to say before I lose this moment.
A Letter To My Daughter On Her Birthday
Today, Natalie turns 15 – in the middle of lockdown, no less! I can’t believe we got here already. I wish I wrote a letter to my daughter every single year, but I can’t turn back time. If only I could. WAH!
Everybody online always cries about how HARD the diaper years are to get through. The sleepless nights. The poopy explosions. The fussy eaters. But the truth of the matter is that they haven’t gotten to the real struggle …yet. Did they forget what it was like when they were teens themselves?
I’m not saying Natalie is a difficult child because I think she is a GEM compared to how I WAS growing up. But, like all 15 year olds, she is testing her boundaries as she ages. And when two strong women face each other day in and day out, it can be a bit exhausting.
But exhaustion does not mean a lack of love and that’s why I wanted to write a letter to my daughter. I wanted to tell her everything I hope she already knows but still needs to hear from her mom. That deep down – I still see her. My little girl.
A Letter To My Daughter:
I miss you. Before I say anything else about love or admiration, I need to start there. Because with every single day that you age, it seems that you step one foot further away from us.
And that is perfectly normal! It’s called independence. You’re finding yourself as a teen, growing into your own identity, securing your spot amongst your friends. But it isn’t easy to let you go… and just know that I never will.
I will never stop asking for you to join me in the living room to watch a movie with the family – even though I know you are “on a call” with your friends and can’t make it. I will never stop telling you to sit with us at the breakfast table even though you “don’t eat this early” because I still always want you near. I will never NOT want you near me.
I am so proud of who you are becoming, my shining light. I’ve said this to you a million times and I will say it to you a million more. God gave me you because you are good – wholly and from the inside.
You see the world in such a special way. You haven’t been affected the way I have and I don’t think your perception will ever change. You are the ying to my yang. I am the “everyone is trying to kidnap you” and you are the “maybe they just want a hug” energy in our family. I think we need both. I bet you didn’t think a letter to my daughter would include this, did you? LOL!
I Can’t Wait To See What You Become But I Will
I know a lot of people worry about the future. We always talk about what you want to be when you grow up and how it’s important to have goals, but I also want you to enjoy your childhood to the fullest. You only get this go around once. As soon as you become an adult, there’s no turning around.
I love to watch you baking in the kitchen and biking with your friends. You make me laugh with your fisherman hats and your clumsy hands.
These are the memories I hope to never forget. Even when I make you cry while watching The Bye Bye Man – it’s funny! I’m sorry. We will laugh about these things in 20 years because we’re laughing about them now.
When you wrote me that beautiful letter for Mother’s Day, I just knew that I had to do the same for your birthday. A letter for my daughter was the first thing on the menu today! Before the strawberry pancakes I plan on whipping up for you today, and before your present reveal – this is my real gift from the heart.
You Are Special
15 is hard. Do you want to know how I know? Because I already went on that ride and it sucked. You actually have it so much worse than we did 25 years ago.
All I had to do was avoid magazine covers in stores to not have to worry about body image and comparison. But you? You can’t do that. With TikTok and 24 hours of endless displays of the perfect 10, I can’t imagine what you deal with on a regular basis.
We’ve discussed this before – how the media is corrupt and designed to make us feel bad about ourselves just so we can continue to buy things. Hold onto that.
You are beautiful. Don’t ever forget that. There’s always more to these videos and pictures. Even the most “perfect girls” have a deeper story. Nothing is what it seems.
You Make Me So Proud
A letter to my daughter wouldn’t be complete without me telling you that you make me proud on a daily basis. I know this year has been tough and unfair. You made the best of it. You are resilient. You adapt and are capable of taking on so much more than you give yourself credit for – please know this.
And if I don’t say that enough then shame on me because I think it in my head every single day. You make me so very proud. I am proud to be your mother. I am proud to be your friend.
I Am Trying To Be Better
Like all mothers, I fail at times. I am human. Please remember this about me. I didn’t realize this about my own mother until after I had Liam! I was in my 30s!! Don’t figure this out so late in the game. It will save you decades of resentment.
Yes, I am your mother, but I am also only a person. See me for who I am. Someone who loves you unconditionally but … who messes up from time to time. Don’t hold onto grudges. Love me, too.
I should talk, but learn how to forgive people. It will prevent wrinkles. It will also lighten your heart and soul. There’s also something about Jesus I could write in here – but you catch my drift.
Learn To Love Yourself As You Are
I know we joke about your silly hat, but continue to love yourself as you are – no matter what. Even if it goes against the grain. Be you. Be proud of who you are. Don’t falter with the wind. Don’t start liking a specific book because everyone else is reading it. Stick to your guns. You know who you are… now love her.
I’ve noticed this year that you are finally starting to plug into our situation more. You recognize that we need to slow down our spending a bit and you are choosing your words accordingly. This shows growth. It shows that you aren’t thinking only of yourself and that makes me really proud of you.
Instead of looking ahead to more financially stable times, we should also focus on being grateful for what we have. A big backyard filled with friends. That sounds like an incredible summer to me.
Always Have Fun
I see you with your friends. You are crazy. You are the crazy girl with the big mouth with lots of laughs. Don’t ever lose that. It’s who you are. There will be moments in your life where the world might try to dull that. Don’t let it. Hold onto that superpower.
I Love You
And I guess… the way I should end a letter to my daughter is with three little words. I love you. Because there is no other way to say how much you mean to me. I love you, Natalie. We love you. We all do. Everyone in this family does. You are our shining light. Please continue to shine bright.
Happy 15th, my sweet baby girl.
A Letter To My Daughter – 2020
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