Thursday, January 19, 2012

Prudent Advice

I am feeling a bit "under the weather" today and have been lounging on the couch reading.
I've had this book on my night stand for awhile now; it was given to me as a gift. After reading through it, I thought I would post a few of my favorite lessons. The author wrote this book for her daughter, these are all things I find important to instill in Blaykleigh and some of them are also good reminders for myself. 

Always send a thank-you note. 
This has served your mother and grandmothers well for generations and seems a fitting place to start.
A dog is a loyal friend from whom you will learn the nature of love and devotion.
Give lots of hugs to everyone you care for. 
Your beauty is not something you earned; appreciate it but maintain modesty and humility about it. 
Few things are as unattractive as a pretty woman who flaunts her assets in a boastful manner. Few things are as sad as a pretty woman who believes her beauty defines her worth. 
Whole grains and fresh fruit are good choices. 
But a cupcake is worth every calorie. 
Take walks.
Walking is healthy for your body and your brain, especially when the weather is just right. 
The size of your breasts truly does not matter .
You are the wellspring of your own hope.
No one (besides your mother) will be more invested in your emotional well-being than they are in their own. Joy is not something gifted to you by other people; it' an outlook on the world that you have to cultivate independent of friends and lovers. Daughter, if I could give it to you, I would, a millions times over, but the truth is that you are singularly responsible for your own happiness. 
Magic is real. 
You should want to be with someone who wants to be with you. 
You can't strong-arm someone into loving you if they don't. Learn to respect yourself enough to move on. 
Return your shopping cart. 
Abandoning your shopping cart in the middle of the parking lot implies a sense of entitlement. Someone has to put it away; that someone should be you. 
You can't make the big decisions in your life on what you think will make other people happy. 
People will fail.
The unfortunate reality is that people will fail you, and you will experience what broken trust does to relationships. I hope that as a consequence, you learn the true value of the faith people place in you. Be worthy of it. 
You will get good at anything you practice. 
Everything gets easier the more you do it, good or bad, so choose your habits wisely. 
When you smile you are radiant!
You are luminous and resplendent. You are rapturous and incandescent. 
Nothing can ruin your life like drugs. 
I want to be honest with you, because there is a lot of fear mongering clouding the choices you are going to face. I'll admit it's a fact that some people are able to use drugs without fundamentally destroying their lives; however, you must assume that you are not one of them. You can't know how you will react to various drugs unless you try them, but the catch is that if you're part of the majority who can't control their usage, trying drugs will send you down a spiral from which it will be all but impossible to recover. Every drug user alters his or her life's potential; drugs rob you of ambition and disconnect you from your identity. This is one of the very few lessons that I hope you do not have to learn through experience. The thought of your tiny perfection being usurped by chemical addiction is too much for me to bear. 
People can change, but you can't change them. 
It is possible to be both pretty and smart.
They don't always go together, certainly, but one thing does not preclude the other. This goes for you and also for people you meet. 
Ask questions. 
That is how you engage with the people and world around you. 
Don't take people for granted. 
As you get older you'll realize that it's really hard just to even make a friend. 
Forgive yourself your transgressions. 
There may be times you look back on your life and are ashamed of something you see. Forgive yourself and resolve not to do it again; it's the only way to learn what you stand for. 
You only get one body. 
It's sort of assigned to you when you're conceived, and you're stuck with it. If you can learn to love it and take care of it, it's more likely to take care of you. 
Gossip is toxic. 
It's a natural tendency and serves legitimate purposes--connecting you within your own community, relating with others about current events--but too much gossip will leave you feeling empty. Learn to rein it in.
You are not alone, and you are not the only one. 
Be kinder than necessary, because everyone you meet is fighting a great battle. 
If you wait to be swept off your feet, you may end up standing alone. 
We waste time looking for the perfect lover, instead of creating the perfect love. ~ Tom Robbins 
Know that I am proud of you. 
Every halting gesture bursting from your inexperienced limbs, every novel expression crossing your upturned face, every syllable escaping your throat--every moment of every day I swell with joy at the very idea of you. And I always will. 

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