Letter to My Daughter

March 8th was International Women’s Day.   In celebration, a publication asked several high profile women to write letters to their daughters.  I thought I would do the same. 

Dear Lorren,

As of today, you are about five short months from turning 18.   You will be finishing high school in a couple of months. This fact is incredible to me.  It wasn’t that I didn’t think this day would come, of course I did.  It's just that I can still remember being in the hospital, holding you and feeling so overwhelmed with love and at the same time scared shitless. 

I think we’ve done OK.  I count it among my greatest accomplishments that you survived - especially that first year.  I didn’t have any idea what I was doing, I only knew that I loved you more than I loved myself. 

As you get ready to go out into the world, please keep your mind open to the possibilities of what you have to offer the world and vice versa.  Be wary of absolute assessments - of yourself and of others.  There is an entire universe of gray between black and white.  It’s in the gray that we find ourselves.  

Hard work will be the source of your success.  There will also be some dumb luck, but you won’t be able to capitalize on the luck unless you’ve done the hard work. 

Despite popular belief, the hard work will not stop.  There is no magical place you’ll reach in which you can now rest, except for death. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking that things get easier with time.  They don’t.  New challenges come once you’ve figured something out and you’re back to not knowing what you’re doing.  This is what’s supposed to happen.

Don’t shy away from the hard things.  Facing challenges is part and parcel of a life well lived.  Keep the promises you make to yourself.  Continue to be kind, loving and accepting, but when people show you who they are, believe them.

I wish you every happiness that life has to offer.

I will love you forever.