To my four, going on sixteen-year old daughter,

17 Nov

You’re actually not the center of the Universe. But you’re the center of mine. I vow to let you learn that on your own, but please keep the crystal meth to an all time minimum.

If it hurts the first time, it’ll probably hurt every time thereafter. So don’t do it again. Until you’re married. When you’re married, it doesn’t hurt. Weird.

When you decide to get a tramp stamp the size of Nebraska, please picture yourself old and grey. Tattoos are fun, but they’re also permanent. Please choose something discreet and hide it. Like under your armpit. One day, your body will become soft from bearing children…growing older and getting wiser. This is okay. It is the fruits of your labor. A mofo badge of honor. But know that those adorable dancing bears that you decided to get permanently emblazoned on your hind quarters when you liked the Grateful Dead for a second, will eventually look more like Chewbacca on your love handles. Not cute. And a Mexican drinking worm? Just don’t.

If you ask your Dad for something and he says no, come ask me. He may be awesome, but he has a penis and doesn’t understand that you need that amazing pair of black suede, fringy boots with the silver and turquoise Native American symbol on it. You will wear them twice, because you don’t want to ruin them. But when you’re in your twenties, you will stumble upon them in an old box and remember how good it felt when I realized what they meant to you and took you to buy them. Even if it means we couldn’t pay the electric bill. You’re welcome.

You can tell me anything. ANYTHING. Just don’t tell me too much. You’re still my baby and I don’t need to hear about your friend Priscilla losing her virginity in the locker room during school spirit week.

"Why don't you hang out with that nice girl who hasn't been arrested?"










If it’s pink, it shouldn’t be pierced. Like ever.

This makes mommy's soul bleed.










You don’t wear white dainties under white pants, you wear nude. Actually, just don’t wear white pants.

Um, we can see you. All of you.












You can do and be anything. ANYTHING. And much like Cher, I will love you even if you turn yourself into a man and dance around like a jack ass on national television. Even then. Even more. I will be standing the tallest and cheering the loudest.

I got you babe.











Don’t go tanning. Wear sunscreen. I’m talking helioplex one hundred. Smear that shit all over yourself. Trust me when I tell you having a basal cell carcinoma removed from your arse is not only a reminder that you’re wicked fucking Irish, but also that you’re wicked fucking stupid for laying in a machine while lamps cook your skin.

At least I was tan for my prom?






Don’t ever judge another person unless they are hurting themselves or others. Then just kindly offer advice or help. Then run like hells bells, baby.

He’s going to break your heart. But it needs to happen. Because if he doesn’t, you won’t ever learn how strong you are. And then you won’t be able to laugh when he turns into a total loser who wears ball hugger sweatpants while running errands on Saturday mornings.

<I would have inserted a picture, but I didn’t feel comfortable googling “men in ball huggers…”>

Be good to your brother.

Don’t text and drive. Or drink and drive. Or speed. Actually, just don’t drive. <Wrings hands worriedly while searches frantically for Valium…>

Say you’re sorry. A lot. But don’t get walked all over. There is something to be said for self-respect. Be generous, give of yourself and visit sick people. Then, you will have fewer regrets.

Remember that your mother loves you. And I will never turn my back on you. You know me better than anyone because you grew under my heart. And shared my blood supply.

No one else will ever know the strength of my pain threshold either.







“Someday, a long time from now, your own hair will glow silver in the sun. And when that day comes, you will remember me.”  ~Alison McGhee

Try getting through this book without balling your face off.

I smurf you,

5 Responses to “To my four, going on sixteen-year old daughter,”

  1. Marylee November 18, 2011 at 3:46 pm #

    so good!

  2. Erica November 22, 2011 at 11:04 pm #

    OMG! I love love love this! My 5 yr old daughter is legit 5 going on 16/17… Drama Queen to the max! You just wrote what I will say to her in hopefully not for at least a little bit…

  3. Andrea December 2, 2011 at 3:56 am #

    I am so glad I found you. 🙂

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