Tips for Raising Daughters: Teach Her by Example to Discover Her Talents
Women are always evolving; I know I am always a work in progress. I am curious about the hidden talents and gifts I still hope to discover someday. I think it's unrealistic to expect any mother to be the perfect example of one who has discovered and developed all her talents. I do not know one woman who could say she has arrived. Instead, mothers can teach that women are always on a journey of self-discovery. That positive example can help each daughter start her journey knowing there is never an end to the adventure.
My daughter started her journey when she took her first breath. I sensed immediately that this child was grounded and strong; she has proved that judgment to be true. I learned quickly that she was spunky. I also learned to look for the good in that quality, and to just be there for her.
I have loved watching my daughter grow in to her own. Many times I had to bite my tongue and walk away so I wouldn’t crimp her style. I knew early on she was the right-brain creative type, and I have tried to give her the space to create. It hasn't always been easy to ignore the messes and focus instead on the “beauty” she created.
One morning when she was three illustrates her creative glory. I had made hot breakfast cereal for my three children while she and her one-year-old brother were still sleeping. I fed my eight-year-old and sent him out the door to catch his bus for school. I left three more full bowls on the counter, forgetting that Goldilocks likes her cereal “just right.” I went back to bed, thinking I could get some much-needed rest while the other two were still asleep, but soon heard them playing and laughing outside my bedroom door.
I knew too well that children that age need constant monitoring; I quickly got up--but not quickly enough! The first sign of trouble was the mischievous grin on my daughter’s face. I had seen it before—it meant I would find one of her “beautiful” creations nearby. I walked up to the bar and saw three beautiful sculptures made from the gooey cereal. Honestly, she did a great job! To top off her works of art she had taken the honey and dripped it over each sculpture from one bowl to the next. She didn’t stop there! I followed the trail of honey over the sink, onto the white tile floor, across the kitchen, and right into the pantry. There I found another work of art – a large bag of flour poured “artistically” throughout the pantry. It was everywhere. Imagine what flour stuck to honey looks like over all your cans and boxes.
I turned around, ready to “lose it.” But there stood my precious daughter, dressed only in the white frilly panties she loved to wear around the house. She was grinning widely, her hands covered in crusty cereal, honey and flour. “Mommy,” she exclaimed, “isn’t it beautiful”? That line worked every time. Yes, I had to admit, it was beautiful. I didn’t have the heart to clean up the mess right then. Any work of art should be enjoyed for a while--and I needed to store up energy for the job.
Today, my daughter is embarking on an education and a career as a graphic designer because she loves to create! Now I miss all of those “works of art.” I look forward to the day when she’ll have a little one that will make her stop and think about what really matters.
Teaching happens in the moment. Nurture her nature.
Connie Fielding is a mother to her daughter, Alesha, who is 18 years old, and to three sons. She is also founder/CEO of Legacy Clubs for Mothers and Daughters. Visit www.legacyclubs.org to learn more about Legacy Clubs and how you can start a mother and daughter club in your area.
About the Author: Connie Fielding is a mother to her daughter, Alesha, who is 18 years old, and to three sons. She is also founder/CEO of Legacy Clubs for Mothers and Daughters. Visit www.legacyclubs.org to learn more about Legacy Clubs and how you can start a mother and daughter club in your area.