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The Sneaker's Ball

I recently took my niece dress shopping for the Sneaker's Ball.

I love stepping in as Auntie. Her dad was working. Her mom, my sister, is no longer here on Earth, so I was elated that she wanted me to assist her with finding her dress.

She is in the 8th grade, and was very clear at the start of our dress shopping that she couldn’t wear spaghetti straps, or show her back, as this was the school rule. Not a problem, I didn’t think she should either. However, what stood out to me was she was concerned about her belly showing in her dress. Her non-existent belly, by the way.

And then, within 15 minutes of shopping, I thought I found her the perfect dress and cardigan to match for this great occasion. It was a beautiful flowing cream gown that was covered in 3D cream butterflies, and a matching cream cardigan with gold buttons. My niece was sure to be the belle of the ball. Coming out the dressing room, the dressing room attendant was in awe and parents with their daughters, were in awe. My niece walked up to me and told me she didn’t want to wear it. I was shocked. She looked gorgeous.

When taking off the dress and cardigan and handing it back to the attendant, she came over and said, “Auntie, I don’t want to stand out, I want to blend in.”

My heart sank. As my dad had always raised me not to shrink back. To be proud of my beauty, my talents, my dreams, my goals, and to be proud of who I was created to be. And here, my niece was feeling the exact opposite, when she had every right to show up being her best self. This was more than just being “shy”.

Naturally, I told her we will continue to look for a different dress, as I not only wanted her to be comfortable, but I also wanted her to have a great time in the dress of her choosing.

That evening, I spent time pouring into her about how beautiful she is, how smart she is, and how I’m proud of the young lady she is becoming. However, statistics are very clear. A daughter gets her self-esteem from her father. Will my words make an impact? I certainly hope so, but the reality is, her dad will have to step in and show affection, offer support, engage in shared hobbies, help with school work, and make her feel comfortable with discussing her thoughts, feelings or experiences.  It is in that, that my niece will develop her sense of self-worth and self-esteem.

It doesn’t mean that she will show up to the party to meet and mingle with everyone, be the center of attention, or dance with everyone in the building. It just means that she doesn’t dim her light and feel unworthy of the attention.

If you have a younger daughter, start pouring into who she is today. Sneaker Balls, Junior Proms, and Proms will arrive before you know it. 

With that being said, it is Prom Season. For those with daughters in high school, have you prepared your daughter not to shrink back but to show up as her best self?


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Joseph S
Joseph S

This is definitely something that is relatable. Not only the lack of self worth that sometime girls feel as a result of so many things, social media, peers, and not being told enough that they are beautiful. But, also the pressures from little boys who compare them to the "video vixen" that doesn't exist in real life.

Our girls can become pretty fragile.

Thanks for reminding me of the impact that my words and time have on my daughter. I'm beginning to reflect now on whether or not I have spent enough time pouring into her.

Honr Magazine
Honr Magazine

Thank you for sharing. It means a lot to hear from a dad who is reflecting on his own relationship and the impact of his words and time with his daughter. Your willingness to look within and consider how you can better support your daughter is commendable. No matter your daughter’s age, it is never too late to start pouring into her and affirming her worth. Your efforts will definitely make a difference in her life. If there is any content or information that you would like us to provide in order to make things easier, as it relates to affirming her worth, please let us know. #KeepShowingUp

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