Parenting, What's On Our Mind

What I hope to teach my daughter…

Carla McConnell by Carla McConnell
July 9th, 2015

Sometimes I get caught up in parenting a 5 year old. You know how it goes… don’t pick your nose; go to the toilet before we leave the house; look before you cross the road; did you eat all your lunch, etc etc etc.

As important as this everyday parenting is (I mean no-one likes a public nose picker),  I realise there are also some much bigger things I would like to teach her or at least guide her on. Some of which  my Mum taught me, and some I have picked up all by my lonesome along the way.

So here are some little lessons I want to pass on to my daughter. I hope these help to make life a teeny bit less bumpy.

* Choose your female friends wisely and  hold onto those ones that have your back. I know there can be some tough shit to deal with at school,  so when you come home and tell me about your little prep chick posse I can hardly hide my joy.  You most probably wont know all of these girls in 30 years, but one of two may be by your side through crushes, relationship break-downs and the hardest of hard times. Cultivate these friendships because even when you feel unloveable; your girls will be there to make you feel crazy beautiful.

* From the moment you get your first job start saving some of your coins. You can learn by doing the opposite of what your Mama did, (I mean I’m still stealing from your piggy bank when you’re not looking). Money won’t buy you happiness but it will buy you the freedom to change your mind, travel, security, a home and the right to say yes or no.

Travel…It’s harder to understand the world and different people if you never move from the one spot. Put on a backpack, get an open ended ticket, take a year off and go! Spend 18 hours on a train in India contemplating the universe, pash an Italian boy in Rome or party like it’s 1999 in Madrid.

* Don’t spend most of your twenties hating your body. One day you’ll look back at photos and see just how perfect and hot you really were.

* If you do decide to settle down and have some babies, choose someone you think you will still want to pash in between cooking chicken nuggets and doing the washing. Yes compatibility and life values etc etc are also important, ok really important, but if it’s all chicken nuggets and washing it will get very boring and hard quick. And if it ends in tears that’s ok too because not all relationships are forever and if you walk away, do it with dignity.

* Always make sure you trust yourself when it comes to situations that just don’t feel right. You have every right to tell that creepy boss that’s trying to feel you up to stop immediately. Your gut instinct should be your number one guide; not your age or gender, or your level on the career ladder.

Most importantly though the thing I want for you MORE than anything is for you to choose to be happy. Life will most likely throw you more crap moments than you imagined possible. Smile, pick yourself up and keep going, even when you don’t feel like it. If something really hurts you, grieve then let it go and move on. And in the meantime if you need a shoulder to cry on, I’m here.

And seriously stop picking your nose – it’s driving me crazy.

What would you choose to tell your children?