A NightLight: on daughters and the hard road
NightLight posts every Friday with encouragement for and questions from younger women. No matter your age, you are older and wiser than some, and you’ve been equipped to share through your story. Please read the guidelines and consider submitting questions or posts of encouragement or advice to firstname.lastname@example.org.
This following post is so well-written from KeLi at ThoreauBredBaby, and I myself, age 30, with a daughter on the way, am asking the same exact question. Please email this post to your Mama and your Grandma and your lady friends. We seriously need some advice here.
A few months ago, my husband threw me a surprise birthday party, to celebrate the big 3-0. We’ll ignore the fact that I was caught totally off guard, wearing “not too tight for a date night—wink wink” pants on my less-than-svelte second trimester physique, and move on to an even greater humiliation. Though the party was a grand ol’ time – with people from different parts of my life all coming together to celebrate little ol’ me – one particular event of the night left me crying the next day … and still makes me cringe a bit even now.
My girls. My best girls – who have known me since bad hair and braces — made a list of my “Top 30 Moments of the Past 30 Years.” They pieced together inside jokes, quirky mishaps and … let’s just say other indiscretions. Indiscretions that would make the film version of my life decidedly not PG. The list itself was an homage to their love for me as the “bad girl” (outspoken, risk-taking) member of the group. It was meant to be harmless, but at the same time was not something you’d want put out there in front of God and everybody. And though many of the memories were cloaked in vague language, the back of my neck still burned when I heard some of these remembrances read aloud in front of the guests — including my mother, mother-in-law, and new friends from church.
Now hit fast forward, because the wound to my pride – the bruise left on that part of me that, in spite of everything I know to be true about God’s grace and my own righteousness, still thinks that if I wore pantyhose to church I might get a better seat in heaven – has faded as I’ve shown those skeletons in the closet the piercing light of the Word.
But then: an ultrasound, and three words.
It’s a girl.
And I’m reeling. Sweating. Thinking about that list and this girl – this new version of the same ol’ recycled sin nature. And I need to know, to hear truth from mothers whose footsteps are up ahead: how do I, sin-stained and thorn-scratched from taking the hard road – the rebel’s path – mother a girl?
When I know what she’s headed for, wearing female skin in the world we live in… When I can actually feel a rebellious spirit –mapped out by my own DNA –growing alongside those tiny fingers and toes… How do I protect her from those dark places — even the ones within herself? How transparent were you with your daughters about your own failings? And how did you handle the times when you couldn’t protect her, the times when you watched her careen headlong into those tried and true, estrogen-infused stumbling blocks that the Enemy has staked along the road to womanhood?