Letter to My Daughter

Hey Little Girl,
As I watch the world continue to make you promises it has no intention of delivering, I feel it’s my job to help. Not just to cushion the blow of what’s to come (because unfortunately, some hard lessons are inevitable), but to help you take in, process, and digest the world around you. I want you feasting on life. And mind you, some of that shit tastes gross, makes you sick, and gets stuck in your teeth. But don’t you pass up the chance to take a chance. Be uncomfortable. Act a damn fool. Walk where others were scared to, or where they couldn’t. Then come back and share your blessings with others who come behind you.

Here are a couple of things I know in no uncertain terms.
1. I love you. Unconditionally. Seriously, no mistake, decision, pregnancy, conviction, or stupid ass comment will change that. You may not feel you need to hear it now, but when it gets real heavy, just know that you are loved. You have den of “other mothers” that love you just like I do. And above all, God loves you already. Just as you are.

2. Nothing you wear, say, or do makes you a deserving victim of racism, sexism, rape, or oppression. Nothing. Don’t judge victims of these crimes. Rather, be their voice when you can, and call those in power to task. If your sisters and brothers are in struggle, so are you. Period. Read Audre Lorde, June Jordan, Angela Davis, Paolo Friere, bell hooks, Adrienne Rich, Cornel West, Marcus Garvey, . Take in what you are told, but ask questions. Read books. Ones with actual PAPER pages. Google does not equal an informed citizen.

Yep, that ends my list of certainties. Everything else, I’m winging it, kid. It’s a little known secret: MOMS DON’T KNOW EVERYTHING. We lead with fear and love. I’ve been scared you’d fall, scared your fever wouldn’t break, scared your Dad would hurt you, scared you’d forget to look before you crossed the street, scared you’d take the wrong bus. There’s literally no end to it. However, the only real fear I have with you is that you’ll let fear lead you. Let it rip, little mama. Anxiety and worry have robbed our people of far too many opportunities. “What if’s” always become “I wish I had’s,” and you deserve better than that. So speak your mind, own your journey, and please don’t forget about your mother when I’m on a fixed income and need you to drive me to the store. I’d also like my liquor cabinet stocked, courtesy of you and BevMo.

I love you madly, and grow every day from knowing you.

Love,
Mommy

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