I wrote the poem “The Right way to Love your Daughter”, while watching my husband as he held our baby girl. They were looking out over the lake as the rain was coming in. I don’t know what the future holds, but I do know I am proud of the life my husband and I are creating together.
I felt joy as I thought about all the ways I know and believe he will come through for her. I felt lucky to have chosen the perfect person for me and a committed loving father for our little girl.
I also felt disappointment as I found myself reflecting on all the ways my dad has left me feeling let down, unprotected and unimportant over the years. Of course there have been some wonderful bits as well, they’re just overshadowed when he chooses to prioritize other people and refuse to challenge their behavior, even when their actions are hurtful.
From now on the only people worthy of our time and energy will be those who understand their place in our lives. People who recognize that we are autonomous adults who should be spoken to in a way that is congruent with that distinction. People who treat us with respect, refrain from judgement and who will support our decisions whether they agree with them or not.
Anyone who expects us to be a part of their lives, needs to make an effort to be included in our future. We will make time for people who add to our lives rather than those who leave us feeling upset, take our joy and drain our energy.
I am an adult, a wife, a mother at no point is it appropriate for another adult to insert their self into my personal life and tell me what is right and wrong. I shouldn’t have to remind people to leave me alone or to ask questions before making assumptions. Life is too short to be punished, controlled or manipulated by anyone, especially “step-family”.
If my light is too bright, get sunglasses or get out of my way. The fire is lit and there is much left to burn.