Yesterday was my granddaughter’s 13th birthday. She doesn’t live near us and it literally makes me cry that I can’t be there and be a bigger part of her life. She’s very special: super smart, kind to everyone, talented in many ways, and so loving, open and accepting.
As you can see in her pic, Virginia is Who-She-Is Damnit! I love that about her. Her Dad – Larry’s son – has raised her alone and helped her be a very accomplished, sweet, special human being. (He’s pretty damn cool himself for being able to do that, right?)
I consider Virginia and my other three grandkids yet another gift from my amazing husband. I love the three boys, but I admit that I have a soft spot for her. It’s the girl thing.
At 13 she’s coming into womanhood. She is special and I know she’ll do very well. But I would SO love to be in her life more so I contribute and see how she takes the twists and turns.
Here’s what the coach in me wants to tell her:
Hold on to your search for fun and mischief, loving your girlfriends, giggling at what touches you and cuddling your cat Snowball. Even though later in life it will likely be your smarts and your stick-to-it-iveness that will launch you into success, try not to succumb to the temptation to become too unemotional and too focused on your achievements.
You don’t have to act like a man to be successful in life. Instead of leaving your girly nature behind, keep her with you at all times…and then you can be ALL that. Stay comfy in your own skin. Feel your emotions. Cry. Laugh. Love. Be disappointed and be elated. Have wonderful, meaningful, deep relationships. And have some that suck, but make you think and learn.
In my book you can’t be too kind, too loving or too open.
Oh…and I’d stay cuddly too.
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I’m hoping that Virginia’s generation is better able to do this than mine. We were somewhat forced to act like men in order to be financially successful, and along the way we started equating our feminine qualities with weakness.
Can you bring yourself back to the basics that you may have lost touch with years ago: That human connection – wanting to love, to feel, to touch and be touched – is your greatest strength?
When I look at the beautiful pictures of my granddaughter and how happy and free she is to be herself, I can’t imagine that her femininity and openness could ever be a weakness.
So I guess what I want to ask you is this: Can you let go of who you think you should be or who you have had to be to build your great career…and just be WHO YOU ARE?
Can you embrace the idea that you are a lot more than your accomplishments and abilities? It’s great that you are smart, organized, resilient, independent and confident. But are you also joyful, sexy, nurturing, sentimental, playful…and cuddly? Can you bring yourself back to the basics that you may have lost touch with years ago: That human connection – wanting to love, to feel, to touch and be touched – is your greatest strength?
Brene Brown talks about this in a brilliant way. I think this will give you an in-your-face ah-ha! Check her TED Talk out here: http://www.ted.com/talks/brene_brown_on_vulnerability.html. It’s a few minutes long but hang in there – it’s worth it.
So, I just finished wrapping Virginia’s present. I got her books because she loves to read. But after writing this I’m going back to add some bright, pretty, yummy smelling little soaps as a nod to her girliness. She’ll like that.
Happy birthday Virginia and enjoy your slumber party!
And to you, have a great weekend! Throw on a dress and go out and have some fun!
PS to Virginia: When you get older, it won’t be your ability to get things done that will attract the really good men. It will be your sweet, loving ability to be real, enjoy life…and cuddle.