I watch you, my darling daughter, where day ends and night begins, your eyes closing against the darkness.
I see and feel all of you.
Your character, your spirit.
Your fury and sarcasm.
How your eyes flash when you’re cross.
(Your aunties say you get that from me).
The way you diffuse tricky situations with a joke or a kind gesture.
You don’t like to see people in turmoil.
You would rather give up something you love just to see them smile again.
Your empathy is huge; bigger than your age.
Your tears over homeless people and your desire to help them is something I will not ever forget.
Your energy is boundless, your enthusiasm infectious.
I watch you cartwheel and skate and climb.
Over grass and pebbles; up trees.
This is how I see you – without limits.
I know you will love all your life.
I know you will not settle until you have fought for change.
I know you will forever be kind.
Sarcastic and irritating and full of temper at times, of course.
But perfect just as you are.
To always know more now than before.
You read and listen and do.
Every opportunity is snatched greedily with both hands.
Science, baking, languages, sports, music.
Your tastes are diverse and you will try anything once.
I am so proud of your open mind.
So bloody proud.
Pride matched only by love.
I love you like you love animals.
I know you will put your all into your SATs, and every test thereafter.
I know you will fight and hope and wish to be the very best you can.
I know you will compete and compare and contrast with those around you.
But please remember your score does not matter.
Really, truly, honestly, it does not.
Every word of this letter will remain true whether you score high or low, or flash those green eyes and refuse to partake at all.
Whatever the outcome, you win.
Because nothing can change you.
No grade or streaming, not any perceived failure, nothing.
You are you; beautiful, bold, brilliant you.