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Sunday, October 14, 2012

My Daughter Realization Made Me Sad

This weekend, on Friday night, my daughter said something to me, so profound and sad.

It was bedtime, and often at bedtime, my kids  tell me of what is bothering them.  On this night, it was Maggie's turn.  Before walking up the stairs, she looked at me, so innocently, and said, "Mom, when I grow up, I want to be a singer.  But I don't think I can, because I am not skinny enough."

My daughter, Maggie, is 8 years old.

I quickly embraced Maggie and told her she can be anything and do anything.  She melted in my arms and started crying.  My heart was aching.  I hated this so much.  That she has these thoughts already.  That she might have challenges in her teen years, with her weight. That she cares what everyone thinks about her.  

At a young age,  my daughter is already aware of sex in the media.  She sees skinny girls on her TV programs on Disney and Nick.  She sees skinny women in advertisements.  Commercials.  It's everywhere;  the illusion that beautiful and sexy women are the ones that succeed in life.  I am proud to say that Maggie is a bright and intelligent little girl, and brains will get her places.  She is my beautiful daughter, inside and out, and I love her so much.  I wish I could protect her from every ill thought that she has and will have.  

I intend to talk to my daughter, and make sure she knows she's special and beautiful.  I want her to continue growing into a self-confident little girl.  She's amazing.  

That next morning, we were cuddling outside on our porch and Maggie looked at me and said, "I want to be so many things when I grow up.  I can't even decide."  Now, she wants to be an art teacher, a vet, and she wants to own a shoe store in London (not in Paris anymore, because she'll need to learn French).  She also said she still wants to be a singer and songwriter.  I just hope that she knows that she can truly be all of those things.

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