One of my dearest friends is someone I’ve never seen in person, or even talked to on the phone.
Heather and I met 8+ years ago on a message board when we realized our husbands shared similar, rather unique, jobs. At first we just corresponded through the message board but soon started talking via Instant Messaging. Pretty soon we started talking at once a day during the week even if it’s just for a few minutes to say hi.
Over the years we’ve been each others sounding boards as we’ve bought homes, dealt with infertility, our husband’s job hazards, family drama, illnesses, car accidents, job upheavals, and now finally, kids. I’ve made it no secret about how we built our family, and Heather’s made it no secret how their daughter, K, came into their life.
Long story very short (seriously- go read the details, it’s so well worth it!) Heather and her husband adopted K when she was 11 years old out of the foster care system. K is a gorgeous almost-12 year old now that looks so much like her parents it’s eerie. She had a rough upbringing- from a very premature birth which has caused a few long term health issues, to the lack of stability in her life and never having a family, until now, to call her own.
Raising a little girl in today’s world scare me- a lot. Which is why I’m so very glad Heather gets to go first on this one. And right now they have entered a small rough patch where K is starting to care -a lot – about what other people think of her. Instead of celebrating her uniqueness, K is starting to want to just fit in.
I will have all of Beaner’s life to work on sculpting her self-esteem and confidence. Heather’s had a little over a year to prepare for this. She’s wrestling with that big time now and I was hoping some of my very wise readers may have some thoughts. Just how can you foster confidence and ambition on a tween? How do you teach them to laugh off their insecurities and to realize just how great they are? Because K is more then great- she’s awesome. Just like her Mom.