13 Important Things I Want My Future Daughter (Or Son, Or Dog) To Know

You’re beautiful (to me, anyway) and probably naïve (like me). I hope you have inherited my eyes and my quick wit, and hopefully you haven’t inherited my constant need for affirmation and Burger King.

I made you a list of lessons, live by them. Hopefully I’ll be around to tell them to you in person — if not, I’ll be right back, I’m probably just watching reruns of Parks and Recreation.

1. There is no shame in eating a donut. Or two donuts. Don’t tell anyone about the third. Make fun of the fourth. When you make fun of your own shortcomings, you own them.

2. Never let anyone walk on you — emotionally or physically. (Basically, you don’t know where their feet have been and sometimes people look like they weigh less than they actually do.)

3. When someone asks you how much you weigh, smile, look them in the eye and say, “not enough.” Pull out a pack of Oreos and don’t offer them any.

4. Don’t just give yourself to anyone. This includes your time, money, love, affection, body, and chicken nuggets. All of these things are precious and should be treated as such.

5. Be where you are. But if you are somewhere you don’t want to be, call me and I’ll pick you up. Or pretend to text someone really important.

6. Don’t let a boy (or girl) dictate your happiness. You dictate your happiness. Follow your joy — whether that’s religion, or love, or the ocean. Follow it.

7. We all pee our pants past the age of 15. I think. It happens to everyone. I think.

8. If you are anything like me, you talk faster than your brain can think. Stay away from talking about hot topics like marriage equality, and feminism and the store Hot Topic.

9. Know your strengths — build on them. Know your weaknesses — work on them. Know your way back home — to me. Know your future is bright — so bright you can’t even quite see where it’s headed yet.

10. Smile when you’re happy. Frown when you’re sad. Scream when you’re mad. Feel what you are feeling, you don’t have to pretend you are okay.

11. Fall in love with yourself first. Someday someone else will come along that falls for you — I want you to understand why. In order to let them properly love you, you need to love yourself. Love yourself like Kanye loves Kanye.

12. It’s okay to be skinny, it’s okay to be chunky. It’s okay to be quiet and it’s okay to be loud. It’s not okay to be an asshole.

13. Lastly, and most importantly, know that your mother didn’t know anything at the age of 20 (and neither do you). These are just guidelines, as thought up by someone who doesn’t really have her shit together. Someday, when I meet you, I probably will still be wrong about a lot of things. A few things I know I’m not wrong about: I love you. I love me. Fall is the best season. Nick Jonas is the hottest Jonas Brother. Everyone cries to Coldplay.

(I’m actually not sure that Nick is the hottest. So, I guess I don’t know a lot of things for sure.)

Love always,

Your mother. TC mark

featured image – Sara Lando

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