I Was Terrified to Have a Daughter

I love to watch her play. Alone or with her brothers, it doesn’t matter-she amazes me. I call her “Goose”, for it reflects both the silliness that dances within her, as well as the subtle grace that I know will one day take flight.

Yet there was once a time when I was terrified that she was to enter my life. A daughter

Not that she was unwanted-far from it! Her very presence helped to ease the pain of losing the one before her, the numbing loss of a child unborn but forever felt. She was loved before we even knew she existed.

I simply didn’t know what to do with a girl. I was more used to boys with their rough and tumble ways-their little versions of manliness. I was comfortable with them because I did not feel the crushing weight of modeling an honorable man to them. I was a woman, and could guide, teach, and love them, but could never fulfil the role of father and man in their lives.

But I was having a daughter.

And I found myself very much afraid.

How do I teach her about being a woman when I have barely begun figuring that out for myself? How do I save her from pain I know she will face? How do I protect her from being used and manipulated, from knowing the same horrors I had to battle? How do I guide her? Teach her? Love her the way she needs to be loved?

How?

The truth is, I can’t.

I can’t save her from pain. I can’t protect her from all that would harm. I can’t teach or guide, or even love, her perfectly. I won’t be able to model the perfect godly woman to her, for I am not perfect.

But I can love her imperfectly. I can show her a sinner saved by grace striving to be more like Christ each day. I can show her failure and forgiveness. I can teach her to arm herself against evil from both the seen and unseen worlds. I can show her beauty in simplicity.

I can be her mother.

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Goose will be four soon. If I could simplify everything I wish she could know right now down to three truths, here is what I would want her to know:

  1. Return to God. Always. Every day. Nothing is satisfying aside from Him.
  2. Your worth is just as great as your brothers.
  3. In this world kindness is seen as weakness, honor as folly, and sweetness as naiveté. Never believe it. Virtues are given to us for strength.

I am forever grateful that I am not my daughter’s perfect model in this life.

And I am forever grateful that I am blessed to be her mother.

 

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