I Will Never Answer That Question

I don’t remember how the conversation began.

All I remember is you asking:

“Daddy, what is my best side?”

It shouldn’t have taken me by surprise. In this age of selfies and instagram, you are probably much like many girls your age. You care about your appearance and you want to look nice. But why that question?

Because you see, you are no still frame to me. I know when you look in the mirror you only see one side. And I know that the last image that you have of yourself is oftentimes the one that carries you through your day.

I just wish I could convince you to spin around. So that you can see all of you. So that you can know that you are more than just a photo or a selfie.

I wish I could convince you that you are more than just a side. You are a sum. A sum that you think shrinks or grows, depending on your self-esteem that day.

Well, you are wrong! You are becoming greater and greater each day. You just don’t know it yet.

But you will.

Your mother and I will help you. And as you grow older you will encounter people that add to your pile and you will encounter people that take away from your pile. You will quickly learn who you want to embrace and who you want to avoid.

Actually, I have been watching carefully and I think that this is something you are starting to understand. Because you see the other day, when you didn’t know I was nearby, I saw you twirl. Not all the way around. But just enough so that you could see a little bit more of yourself than you had the day before. And I think you liked what you saw.

Unfortunately this will not always be the case. You will have days that you will not want to see your own reflection. When you believe that you are not worthy of a single glance.

We will gently lift your chin up so that you can look into our eyes and see what we see.

You will have days when you let someone else’s opinion of you become your own. That does not mean you are weak. It means you are human.

We will raise you up high above all the noise so that the only voice you hear is your own.

You will have days when you heart is broken and you blame yourself for what happened.

When this happens I will take your hand and twirl you around so that you can see what I see.

So please don’t ever ask me again:

“Daddy, what is my best side?”

You are my girl.

You are my daughter.

You are my princess.

You never have been, or ever will be a side!


P.S. “The best pictures I have of you were taken you were not even looking.”



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