How did we get here so fast? Everyone told me this would happen faster than I could imagine. They were right. I didn’t want them to be. You’re all grown up now.
Sometimes, I want to have one more day where you hold my hand as I walk you to class. One day as you grabbed my hand on the way to preschool, I remember looking at you and asking in a playful way,
“Aren’t you too big to hold Daddy’s hand?”
“I’ll never be to big to hold your hand, Daddy,” is what you said to me.
If you were just a little smarter back then, you could have asked me for anything in the world in that moment and I would have given it to you. It’s too late. You can’t ask for stuff now, but I want to make a promise to you.
I love you more today than that day I walked you to school. You grew into the beautiful woman I always knew you would. I’m not a dad who always longs for the good old days. I enjoy you today.
We fight sometimes.
We bicker at each other.
We don’t always communicate well. (You got your bad communication skills from me.)
But I love you. With every fiber of my being, I love you. No matter what! With love as the backdrop, will you trust me? Since you were small enough to start walking and talking, I’ve frequently asked you to trust me, and through this letter I’m asking that you trust me again.
Trust that I love you.
Trust my advice as good and wise.
Trust me even when you can’t comprehend why you should.
With the foundation of our relationship established as love and trust, there are three lessons I want to teach you. These lessons will anchor your soul through the difficult years of middle and high school if you choose to listen to them.
It’s better to be lonely with no friends than have bad friends.
You are like your daddy. You love people. You always have, but not everybody makes wise choices so be careful.
The people you spend the most time with define the person you will become. I know their approval and friendship feels important, but no friendship is worth sacrificing your soul. Leave those unhealthy relationships quicker than Daddy forgets what Mom asked him to do. You will be glad you did in the long run.
You have two options.
Middle and high school are faced with a barrage of decision that leave you with two options. Your two options will take you down paths that will define you for years to come. The two options are simple:
I’m glad I……(fill in the blank)
I wish I …… (fill in the blank)
You will either be glad you did or did not do something. Or you will wish you had or had not done something. Thinking in these terms forces you to think past today and well into your future. Wise people always see how their current decisions affect their future, and I want you to be wise beyond your years.
Jesus is your best choice.
Jesus will make your life greater and make you greater at life. Please believe that, but not because I told you to believe. Your mom and dad believe it with all their heart, but this is your choice.
Your faith is your own now. We can’t force you to read your bible or pray regularly or depend upon God for everything. That’s up to you now. Your mom and I have done everything we can to help you see how wonderful Jesus really is. Now it’s your turn. Pursue Him above all else and your life will turn out wonderful.
I love you, Sophie.
You are my second favorite girl in the world. Your mom gets number 1.
Promise me, you will never be too big to hold your daddy’s hand.
As we hold hands, we will make it through anything.
What advice would you give your teenage daughter?
Do you have a daughter or granddaughter who needs this?
Share it with them.