From the very moment air first filled their lungs and released vulnerably, admittedly I knew fully well the expression 'in over my head'. I held each of them with measured caution as if they could break too easily, but with an intrinsic familiarity I stood awed and somehow presently aware they were of me. Bone of my bone. Tethered by blood and strands that make us who we are. The joke common, ‘When will you have another?’ The boy. That was their question. We were done. Complete. And we had our fill. Three little princesses distinct and beautiful. The want of a boy shallow compared to another child. If we ever had decided on another child, God would again have had opportunity. Whatever granted would have been fully embraced, the responsibility fully accepted. Still, it felt a bit peculiar to have all three children be daughters.
As a father to daughters, I pray often, as often as I think to. There are so many questions, countless unknowns and variety of ways in which we do not connect. I try as best as I can to empathize with them in tears that seem insignificant to me. I don’t always get it. They don’t always get me. But we are here together figuring out life, piecing together the day now and ahead and loving each other deeper with each step. Clothes don’t necessarily need to match, sometimes a fight is in order to right a wrong and feelings do get shrugged off as mushy when the air hangs too heavy. You’d swear I’m raising boys, but I’m not. I’m grooming little girls to hold strong the name that will forever be within them. Not my name for the sake of my pride or my legacy, but theirs. Ethos. The essence of who we are now in this moment, who I am in their little opening lives, that is what I passionately desire to hold strongly within them. Forever, they will bear the scar of death. Once a wound open, now evidence of pain soothed and wounds healed by life. A loss unbearable in my thinking. The nights come when tears do fall pouring from their hearts wishing for life different, their mother’s death to be reversed somehow. They do feel lost and unsure at times. I can tell it in their eyes. Gazing off only half alert, they step back into memory or sideways to fantasy. But in this moment, they are found by me found by grace. They are mine. My responsibility to teach, show, lead and guide them to Him. Them being mine does not leave me as sole voice in their lives. There are others, women in particular, whose perspective and insight I value and admire. And so, I want my girls to hear from them of struggles, insecurities and strengths from the hearts of women conspiring against issues weighing many down.
This week I will feature four such posts. All will be guest posts written by women as a sort of open letter to young girls growing and struggling to find path in today’s culture. Four friends sharing from their lives. I am ever so thankful.
And with each post, I will add a bit of information about each. I’d encourage you to read each day and then visit the guest poster’s website for more amazing perspective.