My dear little girl,

Every day I watch you and every day and every day I am amazed by you. You have such strength, such curiosity, and you are so beautiful.

People stop us wherever we go to tell us how beautiful you are. Your hair is showing signs of being red and your eyes are a wonderful blue. You’re tall, we knew that was bound to happen, and you’re always happy. So happy I wonder what we did.

I watch you walk around the house on your strong, solid legs and I marvel at the history those little legs and I have shared. I felt you moving right at 18 weeks pregnant and you kicked and kicked every day all the time. You kicked me from the inside right up until the day you were born and then you started kicking outside.

I look at you every day and I know that someday someone is going to make you feel as though you’re not beautiful. Someone is going to make fun of your strong legs and you’re going to feel the hurt right down to your core and you’re going to begin to doubt yourself.

Someday you’re going to feel like you’re just not pretty enough, and someone is going to try to convince you that not being pretty means you’re worth less. These little legs that have carried you will suddenly be deemed too chubby or too muscly. I know it will happen, and I know that it won’t matter how often your father and I tell you how beautiful you are, and how those strong legs have carried you, the history that those legs and I have.

You are my daughter and you will never be a stereotypical ‘pretty girl.’ Your hips will be wide and your breasts will be big, you’ll be too tall to be a gymnast and too sturdy to be a model. My goal is that you won’t have to fight the fat the way I have, but there will probably be struggles along the way.

I worry that you’ll see your body as something that stands in your way, rather than something that was moves you. I worry that you’ll fall in love with ballet or gymnastics and have your heartbroken when you realize that you don’t fit into that mold.

You are so beautiful from your ever-growing feet to the top of your crazy mop of hair and your strong little legs will carry you wherever you’re meant to go.

Pacing the rink

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