Feminist Friday: What I Want My Future Daughter to Know

Friday, March 20, 2015

Photo Credit: http://ineedchemicalx.deviantart.com/art/Present-in-Past-125329735

Feminist Friday: What I Want My Future Daughter to Know

Okay, so I’m a long way from having children, and the likelihood of having a girl is very slim thanks to the powerful Mathys bloodline curse (and blessing) of boys. However, these life lessons can be applied to any daughter, anywhere. Including myself.

  1. You are in charge of your own life.
You decide how you want to feel and who you want to be. And maybe I won’t always agree with what you decide, but I promise I will always do my best to respect your decision. You are your own person, a unique individual. And I hope you always make the best of it, and never try to be anyone other than yourself.

2. It’s okay to make mistakes.
You are going to fail. A lot. You are going to do and say things you will later regret. It’s part of growing up. But don’t ever be afraid to try and fail anyway. Pick yourself back up, learn from what went wrong, and try again. Or try something else. But don’t ever beat yourself up about it. You’ll be okay.

3. Time is the most valuable and most precious gift we have.
So spend it wisely. I hope you always do what makes you most happy. Yes, life requires certain duties that are not always enjoyable, but make the most of it. Live each second in the present, soak up all the time possible, and do everything that makes you feel alive every day. Because none of us are ever guaranteed another day. Nobody knows how much time we have left. We only have now. So be grateful for the people who give you their time, and only give yours to those who understand how precious of a gift you’re giving. You deserve nothing less than happiness.

4. Follow the Golden Rule.
Treat others the way you want to be treated. But also treat yourself the way you want to be treated.

5. Be your own best friend.
You can either spend your life as your best friend or your worst enemy. You have the power to choose, and I hope you’ll choose to be your own best friend. Don’t tell yourself anything you wouldn’t say to the people you love most. Defend yourself. Love yourself. Enjoy yourself. Please.

6. It’s okay to feel.
Cry. Scream. Get red-faced angry. You might be called crazy, overemotional. You’ll be accused of overreacting and being irrational. But don’t listen to that. You are never anything less than human for having and expressing your emotions, and I hope you are never afraid to feel. I hope you will always be honest with yourself about what you’re feeling, and open in your expression.

7. Truth prevails.
So make a point to be honest. The truth will come out eventually, no matter how much or for how long you can try to hide it. Therefore, honesty will always be the best policy. But know that there is a difference between being honest and being blunt. Being honest is a kindness. Being blunt is a defense mechanism. Choose honesty.

8. Own your body.
In whatever shape or form it’s in, you are in charge of your body. Make it your temple. Treat it with kindness and respect. Cherish your body, and make sure everyone else who touches it cherishes it too.

9. The only person you can ever make happy or change is you.
The feelings and behavior of anyone else is not your fault or your responsibility. Have empathy, yes, but don’t you dare make someone else’s feelings your own. Don’t let anyone blame you for their unhappiness, and don’t ever try to convince yourself that you can change someone. You can’t. The only person you can change is you. The only feelings you can control are your own.

10. Break the rules every once in a while.
Out of limitations comes creativity. Be safe and be smart, but don’t be afraid to live a little. Color outside the lines of life. Yeah, there will be consequences if you’re caught, but not nearly as fatal as the consequence of never taking the risk. Experience life. Don’t let yourself be defined by anything other than what feels right and true to you.

This list is far from done. I’m constantly rewriting and rearranging it in my head. And there’s no guarantees I’ll finish it before I have a daughter (if I have a daughter), but that’s okay. For now these lessons are enough. :)

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