Letter to my daughter


Dear Hannah:

I wanted to take this moment right now to tell you about something on my mind and in my heart.  This year, 2009, is my revolution year, which means moving and shaking the world with every step, and not holding back.  Not hanging onto fear.  So I am telling you about something very important.

I don’t think it is possible that I could love you any more than I do.  You are so dear and special to me, and dear and special don’t even begin to cover what is in my soul.  The thought of you brings tears to my eyes, just because of how meant to be it was for you to come to us.  The angels definitely delivered you to our door, that is for sure!  You are a true gift from heaven.  And, I absolutely adore being a mom, being your mom.  I loved being your mommy, for sure, but being a mom is pretty swell also. 

Going from mommy to mom one year ago, when your age hit double digits, was a very difficult transition for me.  You were insistent that because you were getting older, you could no longer call me mommy; that was too immature for you.  I was crushed; not because it hurt me in someway.  It reminded me how much you were growing up.  Too fast for me, no matter how slow at times the years have gone.


This year, I am used to calling myself mom, and having you call me that.  I have grown accustomed to you wanting to do things yourself, without help, and am trying to not call you any babyish nicknames in public, nor show any displays of affection in front of your friends.  But, this year starts the challenge for me with the tug between holding on and letting go.


Hold on, because you are still my child, my baby, my little girl that I brought into the world.  You are fragile, and vulnerable, and the world can be a dangerous place.  Hold on, because life is difficult, your heart will get broken, you will have disappointments and fears and tragedy.  I need to keep you close.


Let go, because you are becoming a young woman.  You are a fantastic student, musician, dancer, writer, artist, and humanitarian.  You have made both of us so proud in your short eleven years of life so far, and there is so many more triumphs to go.  You are capable, and confident, and determined to have whatever it is in this world that you desire.  I know that no matter what obstacles may get in your way, you will always forge your own path and walk, and sometimes run, toward your destiny, whether that is five minutes of five days from home.  I trust that you will know how to make those hard decisions as you grow older, and that you will be wise and balanced.


Today, I consider how difficult that balance is, between holding on and letting go.  I read a friend’s book that she wrote years ago, called Peaceful Parenting.  Her name is Nancy Buck, and it is based on the concept of Choice Theory psychology, as to why humans behave the way that we do.  What I take from her book the most, that has benefitted me as a parent, is her premise that throughout a child growing up, they and their parents continuously pass through alternating cycles of competitiveness and cooperation.  Getting along and conflicting with each other.  Mutuality and dissention.  That describes our days and months as you grow older to a tee.


And, I know that we can all handle it.  For at the base of all of this conflict, all of this cooperation, all of this holding on and letting go, is the deepest love I have ever encountered.  My love for your other mom is truly deep and significant, but parental love even beats that.  That love that we have for one another, the three of us, is simply the fabric that will keep us all together.  Through the triumph, tragedy, good, bad, joy and sorrow.  It will help us to know when to let go, when to hold on, when to ask which it is time for.


I love you so much, my beloved daughter.  I know that your life will be as sweet for you as you have made it for us.  Remember always, my earth angel, how truly blessed we are to have you.



46 thoughts on “Letter to my daughter

  1. your daughter is so much lucky to have a mother like you…how i wish my mum were like you…i would be much greatfull if my mum be able to show and express her love for me…
    it was very overwhelmed reading your letter and it brought tears to my eyes…reading your post i can truly say your greatest mum and truly one in a million…i hope your daughter will able to appreciate that, because me im longing for that love and touch of a mum…


  2. Fibi: Thank you so much………. I could give no more to motherhood if I tried, it is a pure joy.

    Hayden: And, even to think about that time to this day, reminds me of how difficult it was, even for her to get used to not calling me “mommy”. I really miss it sometimes……

    Rhosie: First of all welcome; I hope that you will come by to visit often. I know that for many people in life, they never hear the words that they deserve to hear from their parents or caregivers: that they are deserving, good enough, and tremendously loved and cared about. To not say those words to a child is almost criminal in my mind; my parents had a lot of problems while we were growing up, but I always, ALWAYS, knew that I was loved.

    I am sending you a warm hug, and hope that you and your mum can one day move to a new realization about what you are to one another.

    Please, come back and visit soon!!!! Peace, Vanessa

  3. It’s true there is no love like the love for a child. You show this in your letter to your daughter. I hope you put this in ink so she has it forever. Why have I not come to your blog before this???? I look forward to reading more of your posts!!

  4. I have goose bumps!! This is the most beautiful thing I’ve ever read. How lucky is your daughter to have you?? I can’t even begin to count the ways. So many people are afraid for whatever reason to utter those 3 magic words so Hannah is so blessed.

    Cheers to you. I still have the chills.

  5. Hey Joy:

    Thank you for that…….. Why keep those three beautiful words all to ourselves?? It is always much better to share…… and our reward is raising an absolutely amazing young woman…..

  6. Nikki: Please, come back!!! I am over at Joy’s place quite a bit, and I love how different and diverse it is over there!!!

    I will put this in ink also, but I did get her to read it last night. She had tears in her eyes…… the three of us were definitely destined to be together!!!!

  7. Absolutely incredible dahlink, know what it took to get to this point and am so proud of you, incredibly proud! Your daughter is so blessed to have you as her mom and better yet she knows it…

    I still want her to start blogging mind hmph

    Love you sis!

  8. Your post scares me.
    I feel scared.
    I love you for your care, but this post…

    It makes me feel like a bad mom for not writing something like that to my son. It makes me ashamed of my mom for not having told me all that.

    It makes me worry – can this be real? Isn’t it too much? For you, for your daughter?

    I feel left out and guilty for having negative feelings. I know, it’s all me.

    Maybe I’m just not ready, right now, to receive.

    Or maybe I worry because you put the bar so high for us mere mortals, we can only fail.

    But I know it’s all good here, with you… maybe the seed will flower in me, too, when there is more room for happiness in my heart.

    Thank you + big hug!

  9. Tess: You are totally blowing me away with being that brutally honest; thank you for that. Fear I think, avoids truth more than anything. No one that I know likes to admit that they are afraid, of anything. It is so much, maybe too much to even comprehend. But, yet, it is me to the core. And the commitment that I have made to myself is to be true to my heart. That used to get me crushed every time, but now, I am older, wiser, stronger, but still love fiercely, and say so.

    The only bar that you need to worry about setting is for yourself. I am just being me in my corner of the world; as you search yourself, you will learn, about yourself, and love, and life, and grieving what has been lost.

    You have fertile soil in your soul, I feel that, immensely. I want to offer you two gifts: first, please visit Sanityfound’s blog later to read about mourning a different kind of loss; I think it will ring true for you…….

    And, come back later; I am writing about my evolution to where I am today. I want it to create hope for others, rather than having them feel like they cannot measure up. Because, sweet Tink, you CAN measure up. You just need to believe that.

    And, I am always here to offer, and give, and love, even when others aren’t ready to receive. When you are, the love will still be here………

    Sending the biggest hug to you yet!!!! V.

  10. oh. this is awesome. so good to put in writing how we feel about our families. writing makes what is written more concrete – for the writer and the reader.

    a mother’s love for her daughter . . . so amazing.

  11. I SO agree with you elizabeth. A friend of mine suggested that I print this out or handwrite it to give to Hannah someday; I did let her read it, and I tell her almost daily these same words, or variations thereof. It really is just so amazing to be a mom. Truly. Vanessa

  12. hi vanessa,
    can I copy your letter? It’s so beautiful, and it’s represent most parents feeling about their daughter. you’re lucky to have writing talent and let your feeling flow. btw my daughter is 5 years old. I don’t have writing talent, I’m so lost in words to express my feeling :-(. waiting your reply, thanks!

  13. Helmi: Thank you for your kind words and your visit! I simply wrote from my heart, my experience. If you would like to copy it, feel free! They are words for the world! Peace and love to you, Vanessa

  14. Hi There – I’m having trouble with my daughter at the moment. There was an argument with my son in-law and my daughter has gone along with him. My daughter said” she will never come up to our our and also my three grand daughters. We lost everything in Black Saturday and we haven’t seen our daughter and three grand daughters for nearly a year. My other daughter is going out with my son in-law brother. My sister inlaw has contacted my daughter to sort things out. But she said” she will think about it. Now my sister in-law, said maybe met her (Daughter) and then take it further. I would like to express my feelings and write a letter and she is my first daughter. Could you email me some nice words to express and then l can put this in a card. email address – raelene_gill@hotmail.com

  15. Oh Vanessa, I have just read this and am crying at my desk. I went online to search for stories about “a mother’s love for her daughter” as my gorgeous little angel is about to turn 10 and I wanted to make a very special keepsake for her. Everything you say in this is how I am feeling. The deep love I have for my daughter is overwhelming sometimes. She was a much longed for baby and an only child so she is the best thing that ever happened to us.

    I know that my own mother loved me in this way, still does and that is what fills me with happiness everyday. Now I know why she did/said certain things when I was a little girl – it wasn’t to annoy me – it was because she loved me so much and was protecting me. I AM THAT mum now xxx

    1. Gillian: How beautiful, and I am so glad that you are inspired. I wrote this two years ago, and if I wrote it again today, it would even be deeper and more inspired for me. I love the honor of being a mom, and more importantly, my daughter’s mom. Thanks for reading, and blessings to you and your family. Vanessa

  16. I love your letter Vanessa. Your letter is so expressive, a lot of the sentences and phrases you used described exactly how I feel. I am having a difficult time accepting the changes which are happening in my daughter’s life who is 19 years old and I felt that I need to write her a letter to . express how I feel. Thank you so much for sharing. Best wishes to you and your family. Rosana

  17. Those simple 3 words could bring a big impact to our child:)me even Im at work i need to pay close attention to my little baby:)saying I Love You! is not to much:) but it was a nice love letter to your daughter:)……..It inspires me a lot:)

  18. hi ms vanessa.. yes! it is indeed so hard to be a matured mother… as well as hard to raise a child in a very good manner.. But im very flattered that it is the same way that we love our daughters as much.. hehe! but i am not really good in writing. my daughter is 5. sometime she will learn to read,, i will better try to immitate you. thanks for showing and inspires all mothers in your own way. muah!

  19. I really Believe that article, “Letter to my daughter | VanessaLeigh” was good!
    Ican’t agree along with u even more! At last looks like I actuallycame across a webpage really worth reading through. Thanks for your time, Kris

  20. This hit home on several levels. Most front in my mind is my granddaughter turning 10 last month. She used to sit on my lap and we cuddled, talked and giggled together, but she wants to change that “babyish kid’s stuff.” She didn’t actually say anything, I can tell it by her actions. I faintly remember being 10, and I’m pretty sure I thought I was much older than I really was. So I do get it, I know the love is always strong and genuine, but the little girl is growing up. I just have to go along with it. I hope she grows up safe and secure and knows grandpa is here whenever she needs him. It’s similar to a second empty nest syndrome. She’s blossoming into the Goddess she was designed to be, so look out world!! lol

    1. Yes, it is so true; we can sense when they want to break away and be more independent. WHen she first started to break away, it was so upsetting and scary for me. Now, I get to know her on a new level, as a young woman growing up. I can now help her to be able to fly free and open in the world. Thank you so much for reading!

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