Friday, July 15, 2016

Coffee and Conversation: A Letter to Eila



Dear Eila,

Explaining the world to you one day is going to be a challenge. It isn't that I don't want you to know about the hard truths, the injustices and hate. I don't want to keep you in the dark. It's that I don't want to cripple your childlike hopes. Aside from my history books, I didn't feel hate in action until 9/11. Now, that's not true of other groups - some groups feel it every day they walk out of their houses. My girl, you will find that there are people in the world who go out of their way to judge and persecute. Sometimes you'll be surprised because it might be a friend, a coworker, a relative or a churchgoer. We live in broken country with brilliant potential. We have infrastructures for freedom, equality and opportunity but somehow lost all the manuals. Your mom has always had trouble remaining neutral or silent on controversial issues because when both my heart and my head tell me to speak out, it's a difficult combination of pressures to ignore. I hope you too will learn to define justice for yourself and find your own unique ways to defend it. This world will break your heart in one way or another - the hate, the violence, the divisiveness. The list goes on and on. But don't hang your head in dismay. Keep your smile and that infectious chuckle. Learn faces - all different faces - and discover the humanity in each of them. Go out and play. Make friends. Splash in the bathtub. Be a kid. You'll grow up soon and feel the weight of reality with each passing day, but don't ever outgrow your willingness to smile at others, learn something new and accept the differences you encounter. You are our girl, and we have so much hope for your future. But it starts with your dad and me. We won't always get it right, E, but we will always be striving to lead you toward kindness, humility and tolerance. 

Love,

Mom

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