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Destinations, Dreams and Dogs - International adventure with a fast-track family (& dogs) of Old World values, adopting the Russian-Italian-American good life on the go…!

On the Eve of 16

indexI tried to research what it’s like to be a girl turning 16 in America today.

It’s possible to obtain statistics on drug and alcohol use, as well as sexual activity patterns among high-schoolers. I can access forums where parents ask others’ opinions about their 16-year-old dating a 24-year-old and all I can imagine is that insane asylums now give their patients access to computers….

But try and come up with one positive fact online, and you’d be hard-pressed to find it. Usually, the good things can’t be found in statistics.

I know in so many other countries, girls are wives and mothers by the time they’re 16. They’re sweet_16_birthday_party_s1breadwinners, or ricewinners… or starving or fleeing war, and not really winners at all.

Mashenka came home to us from Russia when she had just turned 11. Now, five years later, at times I wonder how much progress we’ve made.

She does well in school. Most of the time, she is “with the program”. thShe still has no idea what to do with her life, probably because she avoids the unknown and stretching to learn or experience anything new.

I pray for her to grow to value herself, to realize that she’s got what it takes. And whatever she doesn’t have, she can develop. My goal is for her to be a strong young lady, one who is committed to God and who holds to her convictions. I want her to be comfortable with who she is, not being forced into any molds or expectations by those who don’t have her own best interests at heart.

May she always know that she’s loved and accepted. May she neverth have a hole in her heart. May she enjoy the thrill of accomplishment, of going places and doing things that matter. May her sense of purpose guide her to fulfillment.

Here, on the cusp of young adulthood, I wish that her path become smooth and plain before her. I pray that any struggles be of the best and noblest sort, that she would aspire to do great things and be an example to others. I ask that she not try to rush things, while at the same time, be able to run with the vision before her.

May 16 be a carefree and careful time when she can enjoy the present, while preparing for the future.

Happy Birthday, Mashenka!



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4 Comments : Leave a Reply

  1. avatar rusmom says:

    Time flies! Enjoy every moment with her and cherish these times. What beautiful thoughts you’ve written. Happy birthday Mashenka!

  2. avatar Cubby says:

    Happy Birthday dear Mashenka!

    There is a site that features something called Queenisms. They are different sayings with pictures from older days of women representing the sayings. I sent them to my daughter all the time as they reinforce what you and I and most all Mom’s want for their daughters. You should look it up and perhaps send them to her or print one out most everyday to give to her.

    • avatar admin says:

      Ooh, I like, Cubby! Thank you for this resource. I am finding that it means more to her when the sayings and wisdom come from someone other than… me.

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