Saturday, June 25, 2011

On one tough little girl

"Courage, sacrifice, determination, commitment, toughness, heart, talent, guts. That's what little girls are made of; the heck with sugar and spice."
Bethany Hamilton
Our daughter has a big week ahead of her as she graduates from eighth grade and sets her sights on high school. I've often said she's got a spine made of titanium because she's sandwiched in between two brothers. She's learned to fend for herself, to carve out her own space and ensure her voice doesn't get lost in the sibling-driven near-chaos.

She balances toughness and incredible compassion - watching her with friends, young children and even animals is a sight to behold - in a way that makes me wonder what I did to deserve such a remarkable kid. She reminds me so much of my wife, and makes me look at my own life and wonder if I, too, can't be just a little kinder to those around me.

We worry about our kids' futures, of course - that's practically a rite of parenthood, isn't it? - but she inspires a certain extra layer of confidence in me: I know deep down that she'll always figure out a way through, that she'll always manage to keep her head on straight even as the world around her does everything in its power to throw her off.

I'm sure I'll have more to share in this space in the days ahead. But for now, I didn't want to miss an opportunity to mark an important milestone for a kid (oops, young lady) who's never content to simply go through the motions.

Your turn: How do you balance toughness and compassion?

7 comments:

Kalei's Best Friend said...

Balance both with being open to both.. To not be afraid to show it or receiving it...

me said...

Best of Luck Carmi Girl!

CP said...

I can feel your love and pride for your daughter. Very well said!!!

Levonne said...

YAYYYYYY!!!!

db grin said...

Congratulations to her! Our younger son is making that transition now, and though he's a bit trepidatious about navigating the school ground, I know that he's gong to be fine. isn't it wonderful watching your kids grow up?

Michael Manning said...

What an inspiring post that causes me to pause and reflect on concerns universal to all of us about the future and wellbeing of those whom we love! I try my best to stay grounded and strong to be able to respond positively to those around me.

daisy said...

Happy Graduation! Hope it was extraordinary.