Things I Want My Daughter to Know

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Sometimes People Get Sick January 26, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — rlginny @ 3:08 am

Dear Baby Girl,

I want you to know that sometimes people get sick.

Being sick is a fact, reality and part of life. It just happens. Your Nana will get sick. Your Momma will get sick. Both you and Baby Brother, at times, will get sick. It will probably suck. Sometimes, it can be scary (especially if the person sick is me or your Nana). It can be confusing when you are so young. But, usually and generally, it is and will be okay. Being sick happens.

Like I said, you will get sick over the years. It happens. I am sorry because it will not be fun, but it happens. Do not be afraid to admit that you hurt or be afraid to talk to someone if you think something is wrong or if you think you are sick. There are people that can help — there are people whose job it is to help.

Being sick isn’t always a physical feeling or physical symptoms. Sometimes it can be in your mind. If you think you are feeling or thinking things you should not, tell me. Or, if for some reason you are uncomfortable telling me (I’m your Mommy, I do understand and I do understand that it can be hard to talk to Mommy sometimes when you get older), tell someone — your Nana, your Grandma, your Gigi, a teacher, anyone at church — any adult. They will be able to help you or bring you to someone who can help you.

Do not try to “fix” it yourself. Do not try to be bigger than the sickness. Do not try to ignore it. It might just get worse and that’s not good. Take care of it before it gets unruly.

Now, I hate going into this part, but I have to: there may come a time when someone in your life gets sick in a way that really isn’t curable. It happens to many people, all ages, all everything. It can be scary. It can be frightening. It can be very and extremely hard.

If it happens, it will suck.

If it happens, please do not be afraid to talk to me, Gigi, Grandma, or Nan. We’ve all been there. We lost your Grandaddy to a disease that nobody could fix. Hopefully, before it hits you in any way, we will be able to cure anybody and everybody of anything and everything. But there’s no guarantee of that. I will be there to listen. I will be there to hug you. I will be there for you to scream at because, if it happens, you will be angry. I will understand, I will hug you, I will listen and I will still love you.

Please don’t ignore being sick. It’s never a good idea. (Trust me on that one.) If you ever even just feel “off”, feel free to tell me. It’s probably your body trying to tell you sometime, to show you something it needs — even if that “need” is just rest.




Sometimes Bad Things Happen to Good People January 19, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — rlginny @ 4:06 am

Dear Baby Girl,

I want you to know that, sometimes, bad things can happen to good people.

People get sick. It’s a fact of life. Sometimes, people get really sick, to the point where they have to be hospitalized, or even to the point where there doesn’t seem to be hope in the future. And sometimes, there isn’t. Sometimes we lose these people.

But that doesn’t mean the people were or are bad or that they did anything to deserve being sick. It doesn’t mean you, or any of the people that loved them, did anything to deserve what losing the person does to them. It just happens sometimes.

It sucks. But it happens.

There are also going to be difficult times in your life. Everyone has them. There are going to be moments, days, weeks, sometimes even months or years when you are going to be in a bad situation or have bad things happen and, during that time, you are going to feel alone. You are going to wonder what in the world you did to “deserve” this. You are going to wonder what these bad things are pay back for.

And the answer to all those questions is, simply, nothing. Bad things happen. There are times when you will feel like you can’t do this anymore, can’t keep moving and can’t go on. You will feel like you are pushed to the edge and anything else would break you.

But let me tell you, that’s not true. God does not “let” or “make” things happen to people, but He also isn’t going to leave you alone completely. Even if you feel like there is no one else there for you, He will be. Sometimes, He trusts us to handle things on our own much better than we think we can, but He knows we can do it. And, just knowing that, will often give me the strength to handle it and go on.

Someone, somewhere, is always on your side and will help you and be there to catch you if you fall. Sometimes, that someone will be me. Sometimes, it might be your Nana. Or your Gigi. Or your Daddy. But someone will be there.

None of this is to say, however, that such times are easy. They may be part of a bigger plan, or may not be something happening in retribution, and may not be more than you or we can handle, but that doesn’t mean they don’t suck, and majorly. They do.

It just means that, at some point, it will pass and there will be light again.

You just have to keep breathing and keep watching for it.




Weight is Just a Number January 14, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — rlginny @ 5:00 am

Dear Baby Girl,

I want you to know weight is just a number.

This is an important one, Baby Girl, so I want you to be sure to remember it.

You are, at the moment, and most likely always will be, a rather small girl. There is nothing wrong with that. Baby Brother is probably going to pass you, both in height and weight, before I know it and, again, that is okay. There is nothing wrong with being petite.

However, I want you to always remember that there is no “perfect” weight. You are female and, as much as I hate to admit it and wish it on you, you will be subjected to society’s idea of the “perfect” woman — some super skinny model who isn’t healthy and has a body that isn’t realistic for any normal person, both in height and weight. Dollars to doughnuts, that model’s doctor isn’t happy with her “numbers”, because I guarantee you she isn’t as healthy as she could be.

As long as you are healthy — meaning a doctor says you are healthy — the specific number of your weight and height should not, and do not, matter. Do not kill yourself trying to be the smallest size. Do not let a number rule your like and what you eat. Don’t be afraid of scales. Or food for that matter.

Food is your friend — even fried or sweet or fattening. It’s all about moderation, portion sizes and good choices. Don’t deny yourself some food you want just because you “shouldn’t” eat it — you’ll just eat around the craving and end up munching down more than if you’d just allowed yourself that small piece of cake or a small serving of french fries. It’s not about denying yourself foods; it’s about portion sizes and balanced diets.

On that note, don’t trust restaurant “portions”. There is nothing wrong with not clearing your plate at a restaurant. In fact, most places, you really shouldn’t. So many restaurants give you more food and more calories in “one” meal than you should ever eat in a day. Restaurant meals are meant to be used as left overs! Also, don’t be ashamed or embarrassed to ask if you can order a smaller portion, or even from the kids menu. There is nothing wrong with not wanting to eat that much food.

Listen to your body. It will tell you when it is full. Once you’ve eaten your meal, wait for five minutes to see if you really want seconds. If you’re still hungry, eat more.

Don’t force yourself to eat at specific times. There is nothing wrong with just eating when you’re hungry and not eating when you aren’t hungry.

Don’t eat just because the food is there.

It’s not hard to eat healthy. You can eat anything you want, Baby Girl, and (assuming you aren’t deathly allergic to it or anything) it won’t hurt you. It’s all about portion and moderation. (But seriously, don’t forget to eat your vegetables; they are good for you. No, french fried are not really a vegetable. And candy apples don’t count as a fruit.)




Snow Rocks January 10, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — rlginny @ 3:32 am

Dear Baby Girl,

I want you to know snow rocks.

Okay, so this letter isn’t as serious as some of those I’ve written you, but they can’t all be heart to heart serious discussions, now can they? They world isn’t all serious all the time — sometimes it’s good to get out and just have some fun.

In the snow.

It’s amazing, even now at almost thirty, with no school aged children and no reason to be excited about it since I’m between jobs, I am wonderfully giddy about the idea of (and the reality of this particular night) snow days. Something about snow just makes me happy.

It’s so white and clean and makes the world look so beautiful and peaceful and perfect, even if just for a little while. There is nothing better than sitting in a window and watching snow fall on already white landscape. It’s just plain fun.

As are snow angels and snowmen and all the other wonderful things you can do int he snow that don’t quite work with any other substance known to man. It’s just not the same.

Snow will, most likely, be an anomaly in your life, as we don’t get it much here in Georgia. There is a possibility that, at some point, we might live somewhere that gets much more snow, to the point that Mommy won’t get as excited about it, and it might not mean the automatic cancellation of school, and it might even get to just be a part of life.

But I hope you always love it and can always go to sleep on that wish and prayer of the all wonderful “Snow Day”.




It’s Okay to Disagree January 9, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — rlginny @ 3:32 am

Dear Baby Girl,

I want you to know it’s okay to disagree with people, even the people who run your country.

That means, also, that it’s okay for people to not have the same opinion as you. It does not make them evil. You can try to discuss whatever issue it is you disagree on, you can try to sway their opinion, but you cannot force them to agree with you and that’s okay.

It is NOT okay to use physical violence or force when you have disagreements. Physically hurting someone else (except in self defense, which is another matter all together) is never okay. Hurting someone else because they have an opinion different from yours is not okay and, to be honest, down right stupid.

There are people in this world who think their way is the only way. They refuse to listen to opposing opinions or sides and refuse to compromise. But our country is based on freedom of speech and that means listening to “a man whose words make your blood boil, who’s standing center stage and advocating at the top of his lungs that which you would spend a lifetime opposing at the top of yours”.

That’s hard. Accepting that which you disagree with so vehemently is very hard. But it’s important and necessary for the world to work and function as it should. Disagreements are necessary and valid.

Learn to argue your points and beliefs, and don’t let someone bully you into letting them go for no good reason.




You Are Much Stronger Than You Think You Are January 7, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — rlginny @ 3:58 am

Dear Baby Girl,

I want you to know you are so much stronger than you think you are.

Now I’m not talking physical strength, the kind of strength that lets you lift and pull and throw and such. You might be stronger than people give you credit for, but I mean emotionally and in what you can handle.

I don’t know if it’s a female thing, or just a Lanier / Comer / Peek female thing, but the women in our family (you included) are very strong and can weather a lot. We have to be. We’ve all gone through a lot in our lives.

Trust me — there are going to be times you think you can’t do it any more. There are going to be times you want to give up. There are going to be times when you don’t think you can handle it, you don’t think you’re going to make it and you’re going to want it all to end. You aren’t going to think you can go on another day.

You’ll be wrong. When you get there, sit down and tell yourself “Okay, I can make it through another TV show”. Or another chapter. Or another page. Or, sometimes, just another breath. And then again. And again. And those small segments will turn into minutes, and hours, and before you know it, you’ve made it through the day. And you can do it all over again until things are looking better.

Because things WILL get better. I cannot promise everything will be okay. I cannot promise things will be perfect. I cannot promise life won’t suck sometimes. But I can promise that, when it does, it will get better, sometime. You just have to believe it and keep going. You will make it through. You CAN do it.

You can always make it one more breath.




You Will Never, and Should Never, Stop Learning January 6, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — rlginny @ 4:46 am

Dear Baby Girl,

I want you to know that you will not, and should not, ever stop learning from those people around you. They are the best teachers you will ever have.

This is going to sound odd to you, and some of this I’ve told you already, but the best lessons you will learn are not in a classroom. It is the lessons those people around you teach you.

You will learn that some family we don’t get to choose. We have them and love them no matter what and you do the best with what you have. You will learn that some family we get to hand pick — the best of the best, the cream of the crop.

Those are your teachers.

You will learn that some friends we have forever, but some we lose along the way and sometimes, we don’t know which one they’ll be.

Those are your teachers.

So make the best of every moment you have with every one you have it with: smile when you want to, laugh when you can, cry when you need to because there is no shame in breaking. These friends are just as important as family: They keep you sane when things are falling apart and laughing when all you want to do is cry.

Those are your teachers.

Over time you will learn about the things that really matter, the things worth fighting for and the things worth getting upset over. You will learn that holding a grudge is only going to hurt you and that you should never leave angry with someone because you don’t know when you’ll see them again. You will learn to tell people you love them whether you want to or not, because you do love them and you always will, even if they have upset you for a moment.

You will learn to leave people with hugs because who knows when you might seem them again.

These lessons will not be taught in a classroom.

Some friendships, while fleeting, can teach you more than you ever thought one person could. You will learn to love someone before you meet them and you will learn to love someone you haven’t seen in years. You will learn that every relationship is different and that no relationship is easy. You will learn, sometimes the hard way, that loving someone can be the easiest (or hardest) thing in the world and sometimes the best thing is to love someone from agar, even if it goes against everything your mind, soul and heart tell you to do.

You will not learn these lessons in any classroom.

You will learn that your family will always love you, even when you hit rock bottom and there’s no one there to help you up. You will learn that help doesn’t mean someone else doing it for you and love doesn’t mean fixing your mistakes. You will learn that loving someone means supporting them in their decisions, not making their decisions for them. You will learn just how low you can get and you will learn just how much people mean to you when you think there is nothing and no one left. Love can be an incredible medicine and somethings there is nothing better than a hug.

No classroom will teach you these things. There is no “Social Relationships 101”.

Sometimes people change and you may grow apart. These people are teachers too. You will learn that just because you’ve grown apart doesn’t mean you can’t remember them and miss them, even if you never see them again.

At some point, you will learn that happiness really can be as simple as a hug or an “I love you, Mommy” and that, sometimes, that’s all you need.

Children can make it all worth it, through the heartache and everything, just with a smile.

No classroom will teach you this.

You will learn that it’s okay to miss people who are gone and it’s okay to be upset they are no longer here, as long as you know that it’s not going to change anything. It’s okay to be sad and it’s okay to be angry, but nothing can change the part and no amount of tears or tantrums is going to return someone long gone to you.

That is one of the hardest lessons you will learn.

There will come a time when you will have to weigh everything you know against everything you feel. and there will come a time when what you feel and what you know in your heart is right will go against everything logic dictates and everything you have ever been told. Going with your heart is not always foolish and going with your head is not always smart. You have to do what’s best for you in any situation, what’s best for you in your life. you should not put other peoples’ problems on your own shoulders and you should never make other peoples’ happiness your responsibility. It is not anyone elses responsibility to make you happy. Happiness is found inside, not out, and no one can do it for you.

You will not learn this in any classroom.

Never underestimate the power of girls. We are stronger than people think we are; we are stronger than even we think we are. We are stronger in our numbers and we will always support each other. Every female knows how these things work. We have to hold each other together; we have to be each others’ supports. Without one another, we are nothing. Without one another, we fall. We have to keep each other whole and we have to keep each other going.

When you think you just can’t do it anymore, go to your girls. They will know how to fix things.

They will be your teachers.

Don’t forget to laugh. Don’t forget to have fun. there will come a time when you think things are bad and there’s nothing good left, but you’ll be wrong. There is always something in the world to laugh at. Let the little things make you laugh and you will always have something to smile about.

You will not learn this in any classroom.

There will come a time when you will feel alone. And that is when you will learn who your real friends are and who your real family is. Your family will love you and will get you through. Your family will take care of you and pull you out of your hole any way they can. but you hve to help. You have to realize that you have hit rock bottom because of your decisions and you have to accept that you are the only one who can get out of it completely. You will learn and accept defeat and learn that failure is only failure when you don’t get back up.

Always get back up.

You won’t learn this in any classroom.

And you won’t learn this by my telling you. It is going to take your living it, experiencing it, going through it for it to sink in. But know that, if you just look, there are teachers and lessons everywhere. Learn everything you can from everyone you meet and learn to love with everything you have.