things I want my daughter to know

Things I Want My Daughter to Know About Her

Several months ago, my wife and I had a date at home after the kids went to bed. We decided to rent the movie The Intern with Anne Hathaway and Robert De Niro. A friend of mine described it as being “so sweet it hurts your teeth.” Hathaway plays Jules, the founder and president of a successful company with 200 employees. De Niro plays a seventy-year-old retiree, former executive and widower named Ben who decides he needs to get back into the working world. So he ends up landing an internship at Jules’ company as her personal intern.

Eventually, he ends up mentoring her. When investors question her company leadership ability, she clearly begins to lose confidence. Ben reminds her, “I’ve never had anything like this in my life, this big, beautiful thing that you created. Don’t forget who did that.” She had forgotten who she was and her overall potential to grow and build. The world can beat us up, but normally no one beats us up like ourselves. I believe girls, in particular, tend to rip themselves apart. They forget important things about themselves that strip the full life from their grasp. These are the things I want my daughter to know about her and never forget.

She’s Loved.

When my daughter internalizes the question, What is my core identity? I want her to immediately know the answer. Her core identity is that she is loved. She’s loved regardless of the good and bad in her. There is no perfecting to be done or changes to be made to earn approval. She couldn’t be loved more and she will never be loved less. Every night when I put my daughter to bed I ask her the question, “Who loves you?” She says, “Daddy loves me.” I respond, “Don’t EVER forget it.” She says, “I’ll never forget it.” I hope she doesn’t. Every day it is my mission to make sure it becomes a part of her DNA.

She’s Beautiful and Valuable.

Beauty is much more than her physical appearance. There is no one like her. While there may be some that look like her and have personality traits that are similar, no one has her exact fingerprint. She is made wonderfully unique apart from all others. Some believe humanity emerged by chance. While I respect differing beliefs, I think the opposite. I believe every detail of each person has been masterfully sculpted by a Creator. My hope and prayer is that my daughter humbly embraces her divine individuality and enhances that beauty by treating people with compassion, charity, grace, and kindness.

She Has Purpose.

A life that is richly lived is a life that is generously given.Her existence has meaning and significance. Again, I believe we are not here by accident. She has been given certain talents for a reason. Those talents can be used selfishly, solely for her own benefit, or she could focus on something greater. Every day is rich with opportunity to pursue a purpose bigger than herself. We will all leave a mark, the question is what will that mark be. A life that is richly lived is a life that is generously given.

Huddle up with your kids and ask, “Who loves you?”