Intentions are a tricky thing. Sometimes the things we intend to do or be or say aren’t at all what the fates have in store for us. Sometimes our intentions are good, yet someone still ends up getting hurt; and sometimes our intentions are less-than-honorable, yet somehow you still end up doing some good.
Sometimes you do the things you intended to do but they don’t end up bringing you any happiness. And sometimes things happen that you never, ever intended but they bring you more joy that you ever thought possible.
When I started out as a college freshman, I had all kinds of intentions for my future. I intended to get grades only of the A and B variety. I intended to graduate in four years. I intended to join the Peace Corps after graduation and help change people’s lives. I intended to spend my twenties traveling and gathering life experience to use as fodder for my many novels I’d someday write.
While those intentions were all positive and perfectly honorable, I didn’t accomplish a single one of them. My goal for good grades was the first thing to unintentionally fail, and the rest weren’t far in following. But the thing that I never ever in my wildest dreams intended was to get pregnant at 20.
Now I have a whole new batch of intentions – big, scary, soul-crushingly important intentions that make my pre-college aspirations seem insignificant in comparison.
I have intentions to give my daughter everything the world has to offer her and more, to teach her love, forgiveness and respect. To show her how to be kind even when everyone else is being cruel; to use her unstoppable inner strength not just to further herself, but also to help those who may be feeling weak. I intend to instill in my daughter the confidence to be exactly the person she is and lovingly accept whoever that turns out to be.
As commendable as all my mommy intentions are, I still often come up short.
Every day I intend to be as endlessly patient and soft-spoken as a parent can be, but most days it’s all I can do not to scream into my pillow by suppertime. Some days I do it anyway. It seems I’m always intending to make her eat more vegetables, bathe her more often, or do her hair like, even once a week.
My intentions are always good, but my follow-through is shaky at best.
However often I may fail in my intentions to be a good mom, I know there are also a million other ways I am doing just fine. I shower my baby girl in love every day, and try to never let her forget how lucky I am to be her mom. In my eyes, Skye is everything that is good and beautiful in the world, and I intend to always be there to catch her if she should stumble or even fall. And to help her remember just how amazing and beautiful she is.
I never intended to become a mother so young, or single, or completely clueless. But I will be forever grateful that I did.