There is this girl I know that is BRAVE.
She is my daughter, Caitlynn. At 18 and a senior in high school, this was the first high school dance that she has attended. She bought the ticket herself and took the risk to go by herself.
Caitlynn, bless her sweet heart, has really no hangout friends in school, but a couple kids in her classes said that she could hang with them at the dance. She would just have to find them.
I would have been her date, but I never sent the paperwork in to be an outside guest (joking, I wouldn’t do that to her). Mind you, we have done a couple father daughter dances in her younger days.
Nonetheless, after mom got her all dolled up, we drove her to the school. The line wrapped around the building. To add more anxiety, she didn’t recognize anyone—why would she, the kids all had their masks off.
While all three of us sat in the car talking and staring at the line that kept growing, the emotions got to her. I wish that I could have fixed it. As parents, we just want to make it better, but sometimes, it's our childrens' job to find their better.
Then . . . all the sudden . . . Caitlynn opened the car door, got out, and got in line. She was so BRAVE. Seeing her stand in line so pretty by herself broke my heart; however, it was our time to drive away. Did I mention she is 18?
When I picked her up, she was so positive as she shared with me about the dance. No, she never found her friends. She just walked around and watched all the kids jumping up and down—this is the new way the kids dance these days—much safer than the birth of dirty dancing in my time.
You know, Caitlynn never dwelled once about not finding her friends, not getting to dance, and not meeting a nice boy. She just commented about all the pretty dresses the girls were wearing and some teachers that she saw.
There is no question that our kids are struggling; there are emotions in them demanding to be released. Heck, if jumping up and down helps, then jump like no one is watching.
Well, now that we are home, I am going to ask Caitlynn if she wants to dance with me—I can jump up and down like the best of them. That is if she can BRAVE a dance with dad.
The comments that Caitlynn received from so many on social media were equally as powerful and touching.
She is beautiful and very brave. As adults we all know that high school is such a drop in the bucket of time compared to our life as a whole- imagine the endless possibilities she has before her! Most 18 year olds would have stayed home, but she was not only brave, she was confident, couragious and adventurous. Bravo Caitlynn for getting out of that car and Bravo dad for raising such a lovely young lady.
This post brought me to tears! Your sweet girl is so BRAVE and if I could hug her I would. Your words are so spot on for so many kids.
Heavenly Father in Jesus name I pray your Blessing upon this young woman. Praying for your Favor and your Love to Embrace her in every way. Fill her up with Your Presence. Guide Direct and make solid her path in her Journey of Faith. Bring forth Good things and Genuine people into her life. Bless Bless Bless Bless her! In Jesus name we pray, Amen.
𝐂𝐄𝐋𝐄𝐁𝐑𝐀𝐓𝐈𝐍𝐆 𝐀 𝐘𝐎𝐔𝐍𝐆 𝐖𝐎𝐌𝐀𝐍’𝐒 𝐁𝐑𝐀𝐕𝐄𝐑𝐘
Talk about seizing a moment.
Two nights after her dance while finishing a great family movie, I got a text from Mayor Woodward of Spokane. She saw my Facebook post about Caitlynn's story and was moved.
“𝗢𝗠𝗚𝗼𝘀𝗵, 𝗜 𝗷𝘂𝘀𝘁 𝗿𝗲𝗮𝗱 𝘆𝗼𝘂𝗿 𝗽𝗼𝘀𝘁 𝗮𝗯𝗼𝘂𝘁 𝗖𝗮𝗶𝘁𝗹𝘆𝗻𝗻. 𝗜𝘁 𝗺𝗲𝗹𝘁𝗲𝗱 𝗺𝘆 𝗵𝗲𝗮𝗿𝘁. 𝗜 𝘄𝗼𝘂𝗹𝗱 𝗹𝗼𝘃𝗲 𝘁𝗼 𝗵𝗼𝗻𝗼𝗿 𝘆𝗼𝘂𝗿 𝗯𝗿𝗮𝘃𝗲 𝗴𝗶𝗿𝗹 𝘄𝗶𝘁𝗵 𝗮𝗻 𝗶𝗻𝘃𝗶𝘁𝗮𝘁𝗶𝗼𝗻 𝘁𝗼 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝗠𝗮𝘆𝗼𝗿’𝘀 𝗼𝗳𝗳𝗶𝗰𝗲 𝗳𝗼𝗿 𝗮 𝗺𝗲𝗲𝘁 𝗮𝗻𝗱 𝗴𝗿𝗲𝗲𝘁. 𝗦𝗵𝗲 𝗶𝘀 𝘀𝗼 𝘀𝗽𝗲𝗰𝗶𝗮𝗹.”
I instantly teared up as I know the Mayor’s kind heart and how this will affect my daughter. As a father, I responded with gratitude and excitement to tell Caitlynn as well.
A couple weeks later, Caitlynn and I traveled after school to see the Mayor at City Hall. Caitlynn picked out the perfect outfit and was as calm as can be—on the outside.
She was so Brave. If I was her at her age, I would have consumed by trembling nerves.
As we stepped into the Mayor’s office, smiles and kindness filled the room, removing any nerves that might have been stowed away. Personally, it has been some time since I have seen my friend, so I was equally excited.
Mayor Nadine Woodward excitedly expressed why she wanted to meet Caitlynn. I think that like so many other gals that read and commented on the previous post saw Caitlynn’s bravery as a strength that they did not have at that age.
As our time progressed, the Mayor conveyed how proud she was of Caitlynn and how this step in her life will be so key to the places she will go in her life. They then talked about Caitlynn’s dreams after high school and the possibilities of adventure that will accompany her travels. It was perfect.
I was just sitting by myself on the couch watching these two ladies enjoy each other’s company. I savored two emotions: pride in how my daughter was handling herself in conversation with the Mayor and how kind the Mayor is to enjoy this conversation with my daughter.
As we depart some 30 minutes later, Caitlynn and I talked about our time. I shared how impressed I was with her bravery yet again. As we got in the car, Caitlynn shared that she almost started crying. I asked her why?
“𝗪𝗵𝗲𝗻 𝘀𝗵𝗲 𝘄𝗮𝘀 𝘀𝗮𝘆𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗮𝗹𝗹 𝘁𝗵𝗼𝘀𝗲 𝗸𝗶𝗻𝗱 𝘁𝗵𝗶𝗻𝗴𝘀 𝘁𝗼 𝗺𝗲, 𝗜 𝘄𝗮𝗻𝘁𝗲𝗱 𝘁𝗼 𝗰𝗿𝘆.”
From one parent to another, Mayor Nadine Woodward, thank you for your time, words, and kindness. She will remember this for a lifetime.