Sunday, December 14, 2008
Today is my sister's 13th birthday.
On this day, I wish for her these things:
1. An adolescence easier than my own, easier than most.
2. Friends who are true and good and won't go away.
3. Notes -- if kids still pass those -- that are filled with only good things.
4. Teachers who like her and, more importantly, are fair with her. Ones who challenge and inspire her as well. Those, I recall, are few and far between but invaluable.
5. Boys who will always be nice, always genuine, always in it for the right reasons.
6. Clear answers in as many situations as possible.
7. Some sort of divine guidance to do the right thing, follow the right path, even when choices are hard.
8. Self respect.
Thirteen wishes for my sister's 13 years. I was a sophomore in high school when she was born. I was awash then in my own self-centered universe, focused mainly on my own problems. As she got a bit older, though, I remember how fun it was when she came upstairs to my room. Sometimes, she'd dance and sing along to music I'd be playing. Other times, she was just cute.
And now it won't be that long before my little baby sister is a sophomore in high school, likely awash in her own problems. I just hope they are tolerable.
And if I could give her any wish for her birthday, the first of her teenage years, it'd be the perspective that I'm only still gaining now.
I'd tell her those relationships that we think then are worth the world really aren't. I'd tell her to pay attention to what she wants in life. And to listen to that.
I'd tell her everything works out in the end, even if the road there is long and bumpy. If there even is an end.
But what do I know?
As an adult, a mom and a wife, I don't feel lately like I know much of anything.
Still, I know what I wish I would have known when I was 13. For whatever that's worth.
Happy birthday, Ashley.