I was born this way. I don’t come with instructions. So, listen very carefully.
I will fight you. I will run from you. I will scream and yell at you. I will make the neighbors think you’re killing me. I will drive you utterly insane.
Love me anyway.
Don’t try to change me, break me, tame me; I will not be ridden. I am wild. I am strong. I am a free spirit. I will do things my way, in my time no matter how hard you push and tug and pull me.
Love me anyway.
I know I’m difficult. I know I don’t fit in. I know I will never be that prized child you hoped for. But don’t compare me. Don’t judge and criticize me. Don’t shut me out. That only enrages the beast within.
I will say and do things; mean things that neither of us understands. I will hate myself, hurt myself, hurt others if you’re not strong enough or love me enough to guide me down this troublesome path. Ignite your fuse of exasperation and I will blow up in your face. I won’t trust you. I won’t talk to you. I will move completely away from you and you may never get me back.
Love me. Respect me. Praise me . . . again and again. Talk to me. Protect me. Make me feel safe. Beneath this rock-hard fortress of stubbornness, I am a shattered mess of fears and emotions I don’t understand.
Value my honesty. Listen to my concerns. Laugh at my silly antics. Don’t get so worked up over everything I do and say that you think is so ghastly wrong. I’m just a kid with a different view of the world; searching for truth, honor, and strength. So, when you feel like knocking my brains out, hug me instead. If I resist, hug me tighter. Make me believe that you mean it. Make me feel your tender strength. Make me feel I’m not alone in this crazy, mixed up place.
If you don’t, my life will be a living hell of guilt and shame, forever feeling I should never have been born. Forever kicking and screaming against the world. Forever ravaged by the roaring beast within.
So, don’t make raising me more difficult than it already is. If I’m too much for you to handle, get help . . . PLEASE! And when you do, I will show you that I was worth it.