If I had a daughter

It’s graduation time! And, my niece Jillian graduated from high school this week. I can hardly believe it! I vividly remember the first time I saw her at 6 months old, the way she had learned to lean on her side, propping herself up with her elbow and the sweet little wave she gave me as I headed onto the plane as I headed back home…


then she’s around 5 content to dig in the dirt – I thought surely she’d be a scientists of some sort…


then she’s a happy pre-teen trying all kinds of things like poetry and guitar…


then she’s a young woman, with her own ideas and passions. It’s been pure joy to watch her turn into the amazing individual she is today.


I wrote this poem for her.

If I had a daughter
By Vicki L. Flaherty

When I was a young girl
I’m sure I wanted to be a mom,
Just like my own so helpful and calm

I did not imagine way back then
I would have no sweet baby to raise
Who I could spoil, treasure and praise

Oh, don’t feel sorry for me
My life is rich and full and complete
It moves along to just the right beat

My daughter is everywhere
My daughter is every girl
Today it’s you that makes my heart swirl

If I had a daughter
What would I want her to know?
Of what wisdom would I be inclined to bestow?

If I had a daughter,
I would tell her all the tender truths
that she would triumph tenacious and terrific:

You are blessed with special gifts that only you can bring
Others carry their treasures – to those it’s best not to cling
When your heart smiles, the rest of us want to sing
Your spirit alive, your joy unbounded is a wondrous thing

You are always right where you are supposed to be
There is nothing you must do, don’t you see
We have everything we need, you and me
Love, hope, faith, and grace – that’s my plea

Just when you expect it will be all wrapped in a pretty bow
Be prepared for the world to shake and winds to blow
For the future is not ours to know –
All we can do is focus on keeping our light aglow

If I had a daughter,
I would wish for her so many wonderful wishes
That she would emerge winning, warm and wise:

Love, laughter, light
Quiet calm comfort
Rivers, roses, rain

Birds, blossoms, beauty
Dancing dawn to dusk
Sweet sound of singing

Sparkly, sunshiny smiles
Free feeling of flying
Grace, goodness, gifts to give

Candles, caring and kindness
Butterflies, babies, blossoms
Hope, happiness, and heaven

Expectation and ecstasy,
Forever friends and forgiveness
Plans, power, promises and peace

If I had a daughter,
I would promise her powerful possibilities
That she would find plenty on her way to the pinnacle:

What makes your heart sing?
When do you forget every little thing?
What makes you feel free?
When do you fly along with glee?

Make note of these godly gifts.
Hold tightly to these sources of bliss.

Dig deeply to find the love inside.
Let your light shine, nothing to hide.

See how you are special, unique.
Trust that you can rise to the highest peak.

CONGRATULATIONS, Jillian! You are going to thrive in the next chapter!


11 thoughts on “If I had a daughter

  1. Holy Toledo, what a beautiful poem. I can relate on so many levels and I’m sharing in the joy and beauty that is Jillian. Congratulations, young lady. And Vicki, isn’t Jillian lucky to have the best aunt in the world? I think she is… such wisdom in your wonderful words. Thank you for sharing!

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