while transitioning my daughter into a big girl room, i called my friend kate. she and i met in fifth grade. we were navigating that awkward and sometimes scary transition from childhood into the tween years. we were trying to find our way. and make our place. and on our journey, we found each other. we talked about our childhoods. we reminisced about those awkward and stressful and fun filled years.
kate is my longest relationship that isn’t family. we were friends in elementary school. best of friends. we were blood sisters. (yes, that’s what i said.) we were friends through middle and high school. we were college roommates. we were there through first loves. and job interviews. and grad school. we were each others brides maids. we were neighbors. we were at the hospital when our first children were born. we were neighbors. again. (our husbands have been very supportive of our need to be close!) we were there through relocations. and through great loss. she knows what I need, often before i do. she is my cheerleader. my encourager. my support. we don’t get to see each other as much as we’d like. but we talk. we laugh together. we laugh at each other. you know a true friend when they can laugh at you. right? and with you. and because of you. we build each other up. we continue to keep each other grounded.
that day, kate shared with me what she was hoping for her daughter who was transitioning into middle school. and i shared with her my hopes for my daughter who was starting elementary school. they were similar. very similar. we were inspired by our own childhoods. by our experiences. and by the amazing brené brown.
we wanted our daughters to know that they are brave. fabulous. smart. courageous. lovable. hilarious. strong. imperfect. capable. graceful. enough. we wanted them to read those words. everyday. to live them. and to love them. to know them. really know them. and to above all else, believe them.
so i painted this sign.
this sign hangs in my daughters room. and it hangs in her daughters room. and it hangs in dorm rooms. and doctors offices. high school counselors offices. occupational therapy rooms. in the bedroom of a brave 14 year old boy with autism. and in a dance studio dressing room.
and these are just the rooms that i know of. i’m certain this sign hangs in many other important and noteworthy places. because the message on this sign is powerful. it speaks to people. lots of people. from all walks of life. it meets people on the path that they are on. and it encourages them to keep going. to stay strong. to always be their best selves.
where would you hang this sign? who would you want to read it? everyday. to know it. and to live it.
i am brave. i am smart. i am imperfect. i am enough.
and so are you!
xo ~ kristi
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