I am at that half-way point I suppose. between looking back on the moment I ventured out into the adult world to find my own way, and seeing a future in which it is my own daughter stepping out into her own life. As I got to know Sydney, I can see why her mother gets a little teary as they near this new phase of life. There is so much to be proud of, so many joys to come, and at the same time so much to miss. Sydney has such amazing wisdom and insight, it is clear that she is ready to take on the adventures that she has planned. She knows how to work hard for the things that matter, how to appreciate the simple moments, and already has the vision to know that the things to strive for in this life are much bigger than dollar signs.
One of my greatest hopes for my children is to instill a wholehearted self-acceptance. In a culture so pressured to be somebody else's version of perfect, I see so many women wanting to be something "more" than what we are. When I asked Sydney what her greatest accomplishment is, she gave the most beautiful response:
Just being where I am as of today feels like a pretty good accomplishment to me. Sometimes I wish I could change something about myself and I then realize that even the smallest change could completely effect who I am as of today, and in general I do like who I am as a whole, and if a little change would change who I was then I wouldn't want it at all. Its hard to explain but I think that even the smallest changes can have a large impact on a person.
Our weaknesses and failings are not what define us, but the beauty in the best parts of ourselves would not be possible without those lesser parts. We are complex and innately beautiful creatures, and we cannot love ourselves without accepting our entire being. To have found and embraced this truth so early in her journey leaves no doubt that Sydney is headed to a full and wondrous life.
Sydney, I wish you the most daring adventures led by your confident spontaneity!