For my most dear and only daughter,
The thought came to me recently – as we were talking about the intersection of slavery and sexism and whether Thomas Jefferson should be labelled a rapist (we really do tackle the big topics on our morning walks to school !) – that you are my future. That I was born simply so that you could be born. I see you as your own young woman in your early teen years. Entirely you, but also me. And as we wished each other a good day I wondered if all parents might not also feel similarly. We live on in the world. It matters very much how we live now. What we love, whom we impact and whether we laugh. And so today we judge a man a rapist slaveholder who was once considered a man honorable enough to be president. Our standards are changing as we awaken to broader ethical impact. No doubt you will judge inaction on climate change in much the same way we wonder about slaveholders. You will look back at the gentility of our horrible actions too, addicted as we are to fossil fuel living. Holding the Earth as a slave to be raped while obliviously considering ourselves honorable. Just like Thomas Jefferson. But your generation of young women is awake to deeper truths. And living from that truth will bring about change. As once we ended slavery, we will end the ugly way we pillage Mother Earth. Not through civil war but through gentle righteousness. I so admire your gentle passion for truth. And I am grateful to have been your mom. For life itself is the greatest blessing we have. And I know life more fully because of you whom I live on through.