Dear G

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My dearest niece,

Back when I was a kid, they said that in 2014, we'd all be using hoverboards to get around and we'd be dressing in rubber and plastic.  If you visit the runways of Paris, we're halfway there.  Otherwise, unless you live in a pinapple under the sea, we're still relying on good ol' gasoline to solve our transportation problems. 

Everytime I see a bus slapped with a sticker that says "I'm using Natural Gas!" I think to myself, that's am I.

The news is full of two things: The rising tensions between Russia and The Ukraine, and The Kardashians. When I was a kid, the news was full of two other things: The Berlin Wall and Michael Jackson. Nothing has really changed except the quality of your television.  Well, except for your family.  For some reason, my brother has decided you can live without a TV and that an iPad and/or streaming Netflix is enough to keep you entertained.  Take my advice and spend your time outside.  Because unless you follow in your mom's footsteps and sing for a living, you'll be inside the rest of your life, earning a living.

Speaking of your parents, they're very good people. They both love you beyond all reason and that's the way it should be.  Before you were even conceived, your parents loved to talk about how gender-neutral your life was going to be.  No pinks, dolls, princesses or fairy's for you - no way! In her house, everything is yellow and blue, and you'll wear primary colors and play with educational toys only.

As I'm writing this, your dad is sending me a picture of you watching the birds on the back patio. You're not feeling so good today, so they're keeping you inside so you can rest. I think it's funny that after all of your mom's talk about "No Disney Princessess!" .....your grandmother and I gave you a treasure trove of "The Little Mermaid" gear and you proceeded to spend every second of the next 3 days wearing Ariel head to toe.  That was the best Christmas. Your mom posted on FB a few days ago that she's buying you a Barbie doll next year, albeit when Barbie becomes "Barbara" and has realistic proportions. Still....I think it's funny.

Kid, the whole point of you being on this Earth is just that - you being YOU. I like to tease your mom about her feminist leanings because in the privacy of my mind, I agree with most of what she says. I do believe that girls are taught from birth to go in one direction, and boys are taught to go in another. At some point, children will realize who they really are and establish their own foothold in life.  Parents need to allow that, guide the children, protect them but allow them to develop and accept the person that they have created.

Genevieve, you may give your mother a heart attack one day by wanting a great big, pink and frilly dress and wanting to meet Cinderella at Disneyland. Your dad once confessed to me that he is really hoping you'll go play for the other team, so he won't have to kill any boys and go to prison one day.  It's a sweet idea but your tender heart will be at the mercy of the world one day, be it a man or woman.  And when that day comes, the whole family will be confident in the strong, intelligent woman we hope you grow up to be.

I'm writing this so that you understand, first and foremost, that your first task in life -- despite what Margaret Mitchell would say -- is to simply be yourself. Be Genevieve.  If Genevieve likes black lipstick and wants to grow a mohawk, that's cool.  I mean, your parents might raise their eyebrows but if an entire generation of musicians did it successfully, there's no reason why you can't.  You'll probably improve the look.  If you decide you want to move to Nepal and study agriculture and we only see you once a year, that will really suck but we'll still be happy for you.  If you decide that college just isn't your thing and you want to pursue a career in stand-up comedy or modeling, I'll still support you.....we'll just convert your college tuition into a savings account.

The point is, my love, that you have a family that loves YOU.  So far, you're 2 years old and talking like me, which I'm pretty proud of. It makes your dad laugh, your mom confused and your grandmother roll her eyes but hey....someone has to pass on the awesomeness in this family :)

So watch the birds outside today and play with your toys, watch Sesame Street and do as your parents tell you. Be a child......everything is new to you, so enjoy it....and rest easy knowing that the rest of your life will be as it is today: full of love.


All my love,

Auntie Sonja

Created: Mar 09, 2014


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