By Contributor Kim Saunders (@captain.and.co)
I've had a few health woes of late. And while we wait for results from a barrage of tests.... I've been getting a teeny tiny tad melancholy. A little woe-is-me. Maybe a little holy-heck-what-if-I'm-not-around-for-my-girls-growing-up. Freak out. Eep. Crazy.
Still... I decided to write a list of advice for my little ladies as they grow up. Mostly advice I'd tell myself if I could travel back in time. Or that I wish my Mum and Dad had told me. Or tried to tell me. I was headstrong. Stubborn. And dang defiant. But a big softy. And not at all thick-skinned. Still am. Oops.
I'm keeping most of the soppy-teary-deep-heartfelt-personal things private. Those are just for us. Just for my girls.
But here are just a few lighthearted tips from my list...
1. Never date anyone called Dwayne. Or The Chad. Or Garth.
2. Travel. I'll miss you. But please travel. I've been to so many places. Enjoyed so many different cultures. Beautiful countries. Beautiful people. I've seen the world. And loved it. Yes, it sent me broke. But the memories. The life lessons. The tolerance for others. The respect for different races. The sense of adventure. The excitement. All totally worth it.
3. Never date anyone who rides bulls for a living. With a buzz cut. From Dubbo. Sigh. Rodeo. More like Rode-NO.
4. If you want a tattoo. Please wait. At least a year. Then if you still want one, have a chat to me. I'll show you my mistakes. If you still want one, please do it sober. And not in Kings Cross while hammering down a Doner Kebab at 4am. Underage. Again. Oops. Tramp stamp fail. Tattoo fail. Times three. At least I don't have a Unicorn jumping over a rainbow on my ass. Dodged that bullet. Phew.
5. Motorcycles. Danger. Don't ride them. Don't look at them. Don't date guys who ride them. Or look at them. Just don't.
6. Marry for love. Real love. Not for any other reason. Love always gets you through the tough times. Just ask your Dad. He loves me. Like reaaally loves me. Even through all my craziness. And I still love him... even though he wants a motorcycle. Sigh.
7. Never be afraid to call Mum and Dad for help. Even if it's 3am. And you've snuck out. And are drinking underage. And are in the back of a paddy wagon. Just call.
8. Never sell yourself short. Chase your dreams. Never give up. We will always be your biggest supporters. Your number one fans. Let the haters hate... but don't let them stop you. Ever.
9. Never ever get a bowl cut. Ever. Firstly... you are a girl. Secondly... it's never fashionable. On anyone. Ever. And especially don't in year-seven-total-awkward-age-first-year-of-high-school-scared-of-boys-but-adore-like-ten-and-secretly-write-their-names-in-your-school-books. With love hearts. Epic haircut fail.
10. Don't be a bully. Don't be mean. But don't be a pushover.
11. Please try not to dye your hair black and go all goth. Or dye your hair green and go all oh-ah-kurt-cobain-billy-corgan-loving alternative. Whatever colour you 'experiment' with, don't dye your hair purple. Full stop. Never. Ever. Purple.
12. Dance to the beat of your own drum. Don't try to be someone you aren't. Find your groove. Roll with it. If the groove doesn't work anymore... find another one. Just be you.
12. You are smart. You are important. You are beautiful. Remember that. Always. Be kind. Be brave. Be bold. But not brash.
13. Do not shoplift. Especially something from a $2 store. That you didn't even want. Worth 50 cents. So, technically, it's not a $2 store. But still. Do not shoplift.
14. Smoking. Just don't. Seriously. Just don't. That shit be uggggh. It ain't cool. You be a fool. Now. Recreational drugs. Well. Um. Heck. I'll leave that discussion to your Father. I'm probably not the best role model. Mum partied a little. Not like Keith-how-the-heck-is-he-still-alive-Richards partied. Or Britney-crazy-head-shave-days-Spears partied. But in my youth. When I was footloose and fancy free. I didn't cut up felt for fun. I cut up the dance floor. Yup. Elaine like dancing at Revolver. Enough said.
15. Be kind to each other. No matter what. Sisters are the best. We want you to be close. We want you to be besties. Mini. You are the firecracker. Go easy on your sister. But fire her up a little. Frey Frey. You are the cruiser. Don't let your sister boss you about too much. Teach her how to be a little chilled.
16. Don't gang up on your Dad. He may wear horrible old-beat-up-holes-in-butt-grey-ugh tracksuit pants. In public. And sometimes... socks and thongs. Just in winter. Just to the corner shop. To get you milk. And me chocolate. He loves you like crazy. I've seen him secretly enjoying make believe tea parties at your tiny table and chairs. His face lights up the minute he walks in the door and sees you. Even if he's had the looongest day ever at work. And I'm all up in his grill because I need adult conversation. He rocks. He is our rock.
17. We will be proud of you no matter what path you choose in life. Choose what you love. Not what you think we would love. Just don't become a stripper. Or buy a motorcycle. Or marry a guy called Dwayne who is a stripper and rides a motorcycle.
18. You are loved. We love you. I love you. With all my heart. Always. And forever.