My Role Model

The other night my god daughter and niece graduated from high school.

It was beautiful. There was a full Mass and although I was 25 minutes late due to some screaming children issues, I got to see her get her diploma.

Her graduation left me with a lot of emotions.

Not only is she growing into a beautiful young woman, but I am also getting older, raising my own beautiful girls. Time is going too fast.

This is the little girl I rushed to the hospital to see being born when I was in high school.

The little girl I babysat when I was home from college.

She was born when I was 17. I knew nothing about babies. My oldest sister has just had a baby boy about 5 months earlier. Both of these babies made me nervous. But, like all my nieces and nephews, I grew to love every bit of her.

All of my nieces and nephews are unique. I connect differently with each of them and as they grow, it’s like having these little mini adults around.

I’m proud of all of them and their accomplishments. My oldest nephew is in college and is growing into an awesome young man, finding his way in life. His sister is a rockstar volleyball player getting  close to 6 feet tall at the age of 16, she always has a smile for me.

I have a lovely, equally as tall as her cousin,  niece who rides horses and competes in competitions. My youngest daughter and her are soulmates and my daughter clings to her when we are visiting.

I have the sweetest nephew entering high school next year. He is so great with my kids. My 8 month old loves him. My nephew always has time for his boring aunt.

My youngest niece is quiet but has such a big heart. She loves gymnastics and at such a young age, she has an awesome connection with her faith and never complains when my daughter, who is younger, makes her play “baby games.”

I love them all so much.

My god daughter and I have been getting closer as she has been getting older. Since her graduation the other night, I have been thinking a lot about her and who she is becoming.

She has come to Virginia to stay with my family a few times and she is my sons god mother.

I often wish I was as strong and self assured as she is when I was her age, actually I wish I was more like her at my age. She seems to have a solid idea of what she wants in life.

She surrounds herself with good people, doesn’t waste her time with teenage drama. She immerses herself in reading, loving classical books as well as funny memoirs by her favorite comedians. Boys want to date her but they soon find out, she does not put up with their shenanigans.

She loves music, classical is one of her favorites. She listens to records on her record player and buys them from thrift stores. She taught herself to play the guitar, piano and violin. She got a banjo for Christmas once and played Taylor Swift songs on it.

I think she is the only one her age I know that isn’t on social media, not because her parents won’t let her, but because she doesn’t feel the need. She does her own thing and that makes her one of a kind.

Her faith in the Lord and her love of the Catholic Church is beautiful. I am often in awe of her deep understanding.

And she is funny! Her humor is mature and quick witted. We can just sit around cracking each other up for hours.

When I was her age, I was busy with boys and gossip. I cared too much what others thought of me.

She has taught me what is important in life. Faith, family and good friends. She has taught me to embrace my uniqueness and to not care what others think. She has shown me that life is just too short.

It’s funny, that as an adult, I’m learning my life lessons from such a young woman. I literally want to be her when I grow up. I pray my daughters will have confidence and self awareness like that. I pray they are compassionate, loving and determined.

I am so glad that my daughters have such a positive role model in their life and I am so blessed to have her in mine.

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