I always wanted a sister, or experience one of those BFF relationships with my mother – just a close female counterpart who would do anything for me, and vice versa. I’ve had my fair share of blessings, but haven’t had one of those bonds.. yet.
Enter: Sophie. The day I found out that we were having a little girl, I had just woken up and received a voicemail from my OB’s office saying they knew the gender. I jumped out of bed, ran to Hank who was getting ready for work, and immediately called back. I was trembling, pacing, and my voice was shaking – an overall anxious mess. When we found out it was a girl, Hank gave my already in-tears self, the biggest hug – and essentially supported my weight. He’s a damn gem, I tell you.
My brain went into overdrive at the thought – what would I do with a girl? Growing up around younger brothers, I knew more or less how to interact with them. But a girl? I wouldn’t know where to start. I’ve had a few months for this to settle in and through much conversation and support from the hubby, I feel confident that together we will figure it out one step at a time and try our best to raise a strong, intelligent, and enigmatic little girl. I started taking mental notes/wishlist notions along the way on how I wanted to raise her and here are a few pieces of advice I’d like to instill in her:
(Disclaimer: I know. Before you say it, I know. I can’t control her or how she’s going to react to the world, but these are some ideals I’d like to keep in mind as we raise her)
1.You’re A Girl – And That’s Badass: Our culture skews towards the male privilege. Hell, the entire world does. I remember when I told someone your gender, the response was “Oh it’s okay that you’re having a girl”(I’ll refrain from sharing my thoughts in response). There will be a lot of people who will try to undermine you and your gender – just know that we want to see you grow to be so powerful and impactful, gender be damned. Between boys & girls, one gender isn’t better than the other (Although this whole pregnancy thing is making me see women in a whole new light). All you need to focus on is being a genuinely good-hearted and focused person, and watch the opportunities unfold.
2. Be Curious Like Your Dad: Your dad has incredible curiosity and a rich desire to constantly learn. Since we’ve met, he’s taught me to look deeper at things – check facts and verify sources. So whether it’s me one day telling you that I’m the coolest person in the world, or a teacher in elementary school telling you that Texas is the best state (tehehehe, my blog, my jokes), or a friend telling you that the Warriors are not the best team in the game – if what you hear doesn’t make sense, then question it. But question it to learn the truth, not to argue, not to judge. And for the record, I will be tied for coolest with your dad, California is the best state, and the one thing you better not question is the greatness of the Warriors.
(pictured: me and Uncle Jesse. Yes, Sophie is going to have an Uncle Jesse just like from Full House – have mercy!)
3. Social Media Does Not Dictate Confidence: Look kid, I’ll be honest. I don’t think you’re going to be allowed to have an Instagram account till you’re like 26, and who knows what the hell social media will have evolved to by then. But if and when you do figure it all out, please know that social media is not that serious. Likes and followers should not enhance your self worth or confidence, ever. Let your confidence come from your accomplishments and self-respect, not from your Instagram pix. Girls who post pix without many clothes on repeatedly for attention, just need someone to give them $50 for a sweater, mommy promises. And for the record, we’re not letting you hang out with any Beezy Aunties either. #thethirstisreal
4. You Don’t Need To Be “Extra AF”: Piggy-backing off of Social Media for a sec – I don’t get why millennials like the concept of “Extra”. I’m sorry that being themselves is not good enough. Daughter, we’re going to spend a lot of time hanging out with you, getting to know you, and teaching you about life – you won’t need to overcompensate. I hope you know that you’ll always be the best version of yourself, just the way you are.
5. Empathy Is Everything: You’ll learn how to sing your ABC’s and the quadratic equation eventually, but I truly hope you learn how to be empathetic. Feeling empathy towards others will help you understand people so much better. And Sophie, that is important. Being kind, not judging others, and understanding their feelings is key in life, and empathy helps you get there.
6. Defend Yourself: As much as I want you to be kind, I want you to learn that you don’t have to take shit from anyone (except me and Dad). I’ll never push you to accept bad treatment from anyone – no matter who they are. If they’re a friend, family member, or anyone – we will expect you to defend yourself and have your back, always. Life isn’t about dealing with toxic people – it’s about filling your life with people who inspire your happiness and success. Don’t let anyone piss you off, baby girl – it ain’t worth it.
7. Daddy Probably Won’t Let You Wear Makeup Ever – This is just more of a fact than it is advice. Daddy believes in natural beauty. Mommy loves makeup, but Daddy’s even gotten through to mommy a bit – and it’s true natural beauty is precious.
8. PRACTICE PATIENCE: This will help you deal with #7. I’m not very patient, but I have a feeling you’re going to teach me a thing (or 2000) about patience. Instant gratification is not realistic, nor will it help you achieve personal satisfaction or success any faster. Know that you’re going to have to work hard, practice, and constantly refine your skills. Life isn’t a race – you’ll achieve your goals as long as you pair your intelligence with your patience and focus.
I think I could have easily kept writing another 30 pieces of advice, but I’ll settle on these for now. This was a fun piece to write and slightly distracting for me as well. See, it’s nearing the end of the road, and I’ve been quite emotional as I’m officially 36 weeks.. 4 more weeks till we meet our little one – and I can’t believe it. I know I can’t dictate advice to her, but I hope we’re able to give her the best set of morals & values possible!