My second collaboration of the year with the wordsmith, Farainashe of Nashe Has Issues. One of the few male bloggers I have came across who wears his heart on his sleeves and loves talking about love, God and his “issues”. Read part i of this letter here.
Rudo Diana Mazvita Manyere.
It’s funny how I have never overtly thought of me being your mom. I know I see glimpses of you in my future, but I have never taken time to think of your frame, height, race or personality. I guess this is an opportunity to finally paint a picture of you in my mind. In all honesty, I do not know if you will be biologically mine or adopted, but I know you will be loved. I feel I do not have a lot to tell or teach you, because I am a work in progress myself. I feel the other thing is, I was raised by my father, so what I teach you is what he planted in me.
I want you to know you do not have to be a strong black woman. The reason I say this is because it’s a trap. It is a tired praise that has been used to condition the likes of us to endure and accept the bare minimum. I want you to release yourself from that mentality. You deserve the best, and from a young age, I will give you a taste of that. I am working towards that, working towards your future and being very careful in choosing your future daddy. Speaking of your dad, I have not met him yet. I want you to grow up and be independent, but to also understand it is ok to let others take care of you.
The world will introduce you to words, standards that will make you want or need to shrink yourself. Please do not. My love, you are beautiful the way you are. I know this seems like as your mom, I have to say it, but it is true. The world might condition you to think a certain body type, hair texture or skin tone is more acceptable than another. Love yourself for yourself, not for validation, praise or acceptance. You will be conditioned to believe the reason of your existence is only to cater to other people, to be a wife, mother but if it’s not what God has planned for you, that is ok. I understand I will not be able to protect and shield you from everything without compromising your freedom. See, I am telling you this because I am learning this as I go. You will learn that I am not perfect and so will your daddy.
To my future daughter, I want you to speak up for yourself, I know the African in me might see it as a challenge but I am unlearning certain habits which I might have inherited from my parents. As you will learn, your grandfather is at the helm of my outspokenness and growing confidence. He gave me room to “challenge” him and stand my ground. They say charity begins at home and I want you to learn and exercise it there too. I want you to grow up in a house where your parents will be loving, gentle, communicate and pray together. I want you to experience kind, gentle love from a young age. To understand you do not have to settle, that is something I am praying your dad will set the bar high. I know he will be your first love, he will be your first example of any male figure. If he is what I imagine him to be, he will adore you and be your shield. I am so confident you will be loved, I am quite jealous of you.
I want you to be confident and free to come to us when you are in trouble or need advice. I am not so sure if I will be the disciplinary because I think I am too easy going but one thing I know is we will not beat you because we love you. I do not want you to think people harm or hurt you because they love you. I do not want you to stay where you are not valued or appreciated because you feel you have to.
My future daughter, I pray for you already and that you choose to define yourself first before the world beats you to it. I have already started saving up for you and your sibling, I have started collecting books for your library. So rest in this, you are never a mistake and you are loved.
Yours truly Mommy.
To the daughter I am yet to have. Unlike your mama, I have been thinking about you more than I should. Growing up my mama told me that babies are brought at the stores so I couldn’t wait to get older, find a job, make enough money to buy you. Imagine my surprise when I found out that all I needed to do was to pull your mama out of my ribs, warm this blood that flows through my veins, do a few baby making gymnastics and
okay you are not yet old enough for this part.
To the daughter I am yet to have; Never forget that like your mama and dad, you are creative, you are an artist. The world will tell you otherwise, they will try to limit your imagination, cut your wings, they will try to bury the parts of you that communicates in languages only the gods understand, languages that do not contain words. They will tell you that a black queen is meant to behave and act a certain way. When that time comes, tell them to keep their crown for it will only add weight to your head. We will teach you to exude confidence in a natural way, to have the brightest smile, to love hard just like your mother and to put yourself first – no, self-love is not a myth dear daughter
……And if I have all faith so as to remove mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing.
1 CORINTHIANS 13:2