my little girl, like most little girls, loves to play dress-up. she loves to wrap herself in my beads and bobbles, lather my gloss on not only her lips but also eye lids, and of course she loves to wear and fumble around in my shoes.

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i often consider my children while i watch them play. i wonder what people they will grow to be; what they will do with their lives; where they will go; who they will meet. i think of the choices they will make. i know jaren and i won’t always agree with them, their choices, but that’s part of growing up. my parents didn’t always agree with mine, but they let me make them, and that’s what matters: that i was allowed to choose; that WE are allowed to choose.

i hope my children know that: that they get to choose. i hope they listen to us, but i also hope they never feel pent in by parameters or expectations, but that they are free to learn and grow and develop their true self by the choices they choose to make. i also hope they always know that jaren and i, even if we don’t agree with their decisions, will always try to understand their feelings, see their point of view, and appreciate their vision and personal judgement.

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i hope that someday lark and i literally do share shoes. i look forward to nordstrom shoe shopping extravaganzas!

i also hope that no matter what shoes she chooses to walk her life’s experiences in she always knows that i will walk along side her. always. no matter what. and if she doesn’t want me to walk along side her then i will walk a few steps behind. and if she wants me to carry her for a bit i will do that too. and if she wants me to go away then i will follow her in the car. ;) i hope she knows that i will always try to understand the path she walks. and that while she is discovering her inner and outer voice i hope she knows, and trusts, that jaren and i will listen to all of its tones.

i hope she knows that while she tries on all of her “shoes”, finding the perfect fit for her walk, that we will be behind her.

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i also hope she fills her shoes with confidence. i hope she always holds firm to the belief of who she is. i hope she stays as independent as she already is. i hope if she chooses to be an artist she paints all the beauty she sees in her head. if she chooses to be a musician i hope she plays all the music her heart sings. if she chooses to be a teacher, doctor, lawyer, astronaut, model, actress, pharmaceutical rep, truck driver, lunch lady, whatever, i hope she leaps, jumps, hurdles, and PUSHES any obstacles in her way that might hinder her from reaching her dreams.

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i hope she grows up knowing that inside of her is a free spirit, a beautiful, strong-willed, energy that fills her steps, and her smiles, with spring.

i want her to grow up knowing she can do anything and be anything.

there is something inside of me that tells me she already knows this too.

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i hope she always knows how special and loved she is, and that she is a gift to her family and to this world.

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i know she’s like her mom and doesn’t like to be told what to do. and that’s ok, because it means she already thinks for herself, and that, is an attractive quality in a woman.

i hope she always thinks for herself and isn’t afraid to share her opinions on anything.

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larkee, no matter what shoes you choose to fill: booties, kitten heels, keds, loafers, wing tips, espadrils, peep toes, platforms, riding boots, converse, wedges, slippers, diving fins, wellies, cowboy boots, hiking boots, ballet slippers, snow boots, flip flops, jack percells, bowling shoes, fishing waiters, saddle shoes, birkenstocks, steel-toe boots, vans, pumas, cleats, tap shoes, moccasins, jelly shoes, or glass slippers, you fill them with confidence and stand tall!!! (thanks for all the shoe categories, kat!!)

and then create, believe, and dance to the beat your heart makes.

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care about what YOU think, lark; that’s what matters. i love you so much, mom

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