Nine years old and already learning what it feels like to have her heart broken by the unkindness of the world. She already knows what it feels like to have her peers comment on her body, her face, her clothes, her family.
She’s been called too stupid, too fat, too ugly, too poor, too loud, too huggy, too wild, too messy. She’s been uninvited because she’s not pretty enough, skinny enough, happy enough, funny enough, liked enough.
Those words don’t hurt me because I know they’re not true. I know she’s enough. What hurts me is how broken those words make her. What kills me is how she believes the naysayers of the world instead of her mama, the person who knows her best.
And that, my friends is why we HAVE to learn to love ourselves.
These babies are watching us. They’re learning how to love themselves by watching how we love our own selves. They CANNOT hear us when we tell them they’re enough because they’re too busy hearing us tell ourselves we’re not.
I vow to erase self-hate from my life. I promise to learn to appreciate who and what I am without exception. I will love me. Because me loving me is the only way I can teach her to love her.
If this hit you in some kind of way, I know it’s because you’re picturing your own kids and the struggles they’ve seen. I am one mom of one daughter and our story is not unique. It’s the story of every mother and the daughters they’re raising.
But we aren’t here to dwell in the heartache. We’re here to breed confidence and resiliency in the hearts of our babies. With that in mind, I want to hear from the mamas and the aunties and the grandmas and the teachers, and all the women who have little girls looking up to them…
I want you to picture that little woman you’re helping to shape and promise me right now you’re going to start loving yourself the way you want her to love herself.”
This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Nicole O’Shea. You can follow her journey on Facebook and Instagram. Submit your own story here and be sure to subscribe to our free email newsletter for our best stories, and YouTube for our best videos.
Read more stories like this:
‘We found McKenzie in the bathroom. She hung herself. Get here now!’ It was too late.’: 9-year-old girl commits suicide after relentless bullying, family’s grief inspires ‘anti-bullying’ foundation
‘My son got suspended 5 days for beating up his bully. As a parent, I’m supposed to be upset with him. Not even a little.’: Mom shares plea for change after son is continuously bullied
Do you know someone who could benefit from reading this? SHARE this story on Facebook with family and friends.