A Perfect Gift
During my daughter's 7th grade year of school she came home one day, sat at her desk and began attempting to draw horses. She tried again and again, becoming more frustrated with every eraser-laden picture. I was pretty sure I had just walked into the twilight zone because she had always had a narrow set of interests and drawing horses was not one of them. I soon found out that she did not like horses, another girl at school did. She was trying to like them, to draw them, to be like someone else. For the first time in her 12 years she was beginning to realize that she wasn't quite like her classmates and decided to abandon her own interests for acceptance. It broke my heart. I knew we had turned a corner that there would be no finding our way back from here. Her desire to fit in has continued and my desire to help her be happy with who she is has followed right along side. When she began her role managing the girls' high school soccer team three years ago she watched with envy as each girl received their varsity letter for participating. We were told that once in a while a team manager will get a varsity letter for their assistance on the team but it is not until their junior or senior year of high school. I helped my daughter remember this fact often, as she pined over being just like her team. After her second season of volunteering we attended the end of year banquet and I watched as new girls received letters and academic certificates and my daughter received overwhelming thanks and praise for her hard work. As the varsity coach finished his speech he announced that he had one last gift, my daughter's varsity letter. The pride in her face and the applause in the room and the tears in my eyes swirled into a memory that neither one of us will ever forget. This Christmas that varsity letter will be placed on a jacket that she may just wear until she's 80. Yes she had been given that coveted varsity letter but she had also been given the gift of someone who looked past rules and guidelines and the "norm" to give her what she wanted more than anything, what I wanted most for her... Acceptance. Don’t forget to enter our Boredom Buster giveaway: a Kindle Fire preloaded with our best-selling apps!