I’ve written before about a close friend whose wife was tragically killed in a car accident last year. He’s still dealing with a lot of fall-out from that and we recently spent some time talking about what she would have wanted for their young daughter, now 4. This later prompted the conversation with Jim about what I’d want for Luella if something happened to me and I couldn’t raise her.
There are things I know he’d ensure for her. With Jim as a Dad Luella will always get great home-cooked meals, regular visits to feed ducks and walk dogs, all kinds of DIY science experiments, and lots of laughter.
I decided to write out a list of some other things I wish for our daughter. I want Luella to:
- Know her Grandparents, Aunties and Uncles – both the biological ones and honorary – no matter how far away from them she lives.
- Live at least part of her life in the U.S. – particularly New York and San Francisco. I hope for her to experience many other parts of the world as well.
- Spend time outside every day, whether it’s roaming the city streets or hiking through the bush.
- Explore some type of artistic pursuit.
- Have a respect for the Earth and all of its inhabitants – human and animal alike.
- Not be afraid to take chances and make mistakes along the way.
- Volunteer, to develop empathy, learn the privilege she was born into, and use her gifts to help others.
- Never complain of being bored – there’s always a game to play, person to help, artwork to create, book to read or new place to explore.
- Follow her own path in life, whether that leads to school, work, family, service or some combination thereof, that she never feels limited in her choices by societal expectations.
- Come to develop her own sense of morals and not simply do good in order to be rewarded.
- Vote and understand how she can use her political voice to create the change she wishes to see in the world.
- Receive truth when she asks “why?” and have enough imagination to ask “why not?”
- Always feel that she has a home she can turn to, where she is safe and loved.
With any luck I’ll be able to be there by her side as she experiences all of these things.