Random musings and activities of a 30 something mom, potential sprint triathlete, vegetarian, dog and cat owner, and a evolving urban homesteader just trying to do the right thing in life for my daughter and the world around us. If the blog seems random, it's because life is and hits us all at 100mph.
Tuesday, March 24, 2009

PostHeaderIcon My Birthday Gift to my Daughter.

My baby turns 7 today. Each year for my little one's birthday, and some other special occasions, I write her a letter. Usually a 2 or 3 page handwritten letter that recaps some of the highs and lows of the previous year. The night where I write the letter is usually lacking in sleep, full of introspection, sometimes a few tears, and usually a lot of smiles. Last night was no different.

This year though, I spent some time thinking over the last 7 years about the people who have helped along the way. There are so many people that have made our lives better and I'm at a loss on how to thank them appropriately. Hopefully they know they can call me at 3am and I'll come help them if needed. I can never completely return what they've given to our lives.

Part of the letter was naming these people by name. Some of them are no longer in our lives for various reasons, and others I think will be there for a long time to come. Surprisingly very few are actually related, but everyone I told her about everyone I consider family.

I haven't decided at what age I will give these letters to her, but I hope when she reads them she will learn to appreciate that sometimes the best "family" to have is not the ones you're related to.

I decided to start doing this after receiving a hand written letter from my step mom. She sent it while I was pregnant. It was a simple one page letter that shared my pain, my joys, and gave encouragement. It is carefully stored where I keep other valuables, such as passports and birth certificates. It means that much to me. It's been read dozens of times and might have been the best "baby gift" I received. I guess my hope is that one day maybe even one of these letters will mean as much to my little one.

The games and gifts she receives this birthday will eventually be outgrown or broke. What was the coolest gift will soon be only remembered in photos, but I hope these letters from her mom will be something that will never go out of style or be forgotten. To me, that's the best birthday gift I could give my daughter (despite her desire for a wii).


TwoTanks said...

I don't normally read blogs, but I found yours inspiring, a couple of ways. First, I have been toying with the idea of running longer distance. Your blog quotes are a good kick in the ass to get me going.
Second, I also have a daughter. She is 11, so we are well along the way. However, as a dad I don't get nearly the harmone moments that my wife does.
Still, there is the whole family time vs. training time thing. I will have to work that out somehow.

JustJen said...

Thanks! That means a lot.

Certainly the hardest thing for me is balancing mommy time with my time. By time I pick her up from after school care around 530 and put her to bed, around 830, Monday thru Friday I only get 3 hours a day with her. It quite disheatening. I would ove to say those 3 hours are full of wonderful moments, but in reality are full of dinner, her chores, her homework, we try to do one board game or puzzle a night, then shower, book or two, then bed.

JustJen said...

(I'm responding via blackberry so forgive the dual response).

I wish I had the magical formula for balancing the two. Not only do you have time with your daughter to worry about, but also your wife. That can't be easy.

With my little one, I have learned she tolerates me doing my thing well, as long as she knows that she will have my undivided attention later, whvig includes leaving the blackberry in my purse on silent! Haha.

Keep me updated how your progress is going!!!

Post a Comment

Related Posts with Thumbnails Share

Post-Tri Hug

Post-Tri Hug
You did it Mommy!


Hood To Coast Relay 2007

Quotes as I come across them......

“Pain is temporary. It may last a minute, an hour, a day, or a year, but eventually it will subside and something else will take its place. If I quit, however, it last forever.” ~~~Lance Armstrong

"The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy." ~~~ Martin Luther King, Jr.

"I like running because it's a challenge. If you run hard, there's the pain----and you've got to work your way through the pain. You know, lately it seems all you hear is 'Don't overdo it' and 'Don't push yourself.' Well, I think that's a lot of bull. If you push the human body, it will respond." ~~~Bob Clarke, Philadelphia Flyers general manager, NHL Hall of Famer. (Will-Weber's "Voices From the Midpack" chapter.)

The reason most people never reach their goals is that they don’t define them, or ever seriously consider them as believable or achievable. Winners can tell you where they are going, what they plan to do along the way, and who will be sharing the adventure with them.~~~Denis Watley

Perhaps the most valuable result of all education is the ability to make yourself do the thing you have to do, when it ought to be done, whether you like it or not; it is the first lesson that ought to be learned; and however early a man's training begins, it is probably the last lesson that he learns thoroughly. ~~~Thomas H. Huxley (1825 - 1895)