I Guess I’d Follow My Daughter Anywhere

“I wish he would quiet down,” said someone … I can’t remember who. “Boy, that’s annoying.”

Ever since we let Azzie, our cat, out of the house for a few moments while we hung up the Christmas lights, he’s been completely discontent. We never let the cats out much because … this right here. The cat balks louder and louder, over and over. And not to mention the summer fleas, the many critters excluding the fleas that would eat him alive. And boy, what if he ran under the deck? 

And right now, it’s cold. It’s snowing. It’s actually snowing (it snowed one day, a week ago … you get the idea). A novelty in these parts of Texas. And the wind is whipping around something fierce.

My snow-girl. Her New Year’s resolutions are to become well-rounded and to get in shape.

My daughter goes to her room and places on her winter gear. She puts the collar and leash on Azzie. He’s really balking now. 

My daughter. I’m not surprised. She’ll go the extra mile for anyone, especially those she loves. Every Sunday, during “shake-a-hand” moment, she walks all the way across the church to hug and talk to our realtor, the first person we met when we moved here and the very one to invite us to her church, our church. Yes, she ventures all the way there because she loves Ms. Frances. I love her, too, but I’m not so great at going the extra mile. I wave across the way. 

But that’s my daughter. She’ll walk the extra mile. She’ll brave the new ice cream flavor, while I stick to the safe mint chocolate chip. But she lets me try the new. She’d give her last dime. Her last bite. Her coat. She loves the lovely and unlovely. She doesn’t meet a stranger these days. My shy, quiet daughter is coming into her own God-given gifts. A friend to all. A giver.

The wind rattles the house, along with the windows.

My daughter picks up the cat, opens the front door, steps her new boots out into the snow. 

I throw on my winter gear, grab my camera because when it’s all said and done, I guess I’d follow her anywhere. And I want to love like she loves. And I want to capture her love on camera. 

She sets Azzie down into the snow. He leaves a trail of paw prints.

And in no time, we’re all outside.

And almost lying prostrate for a good photo, I think about the prints I’m leaving on this world, on my girls, on my friends …

I want to leave the kind of heart-prints my daughter has left on me. I want to throw open the door, brave the wind and cold, the unknown, and step out in love … to love. And I know if I ever step out, I’ll never be content to stay inside.

What moves you to action? Others’ words or actions? 

8 thoughts on “I Guess I’d Follow My Daughter Anywhere

  1. Andrew, it makes total sense. If you don't keep going, you won't be able to keep going. And then your health would spiral more. I get that. And I can't tell you how much your writing has helped me in recent days. Thank you. Keep going.


  2. Diane, you are so sweet. Sometimes I want to get lazy, but yes, that love of laughter and playfulness with them and knowing they won't be young forever … keeps me rolling up my sleeves and going where sometimes I don't feel I have the energy to go. But wow, I'm always so grateful I went. xoxo


  3. Your amazing daughter, Shelli…oh, how she LOVES. My word 🙂

    Your pictures–it's more than the amazing shades, there's tons of heart in each shot. You have such a gift of capturing seemingly small moments. But it's these kinds of moments we want to remember.

    You're such a good mama…makes me wish my girls were younger.

    So much love,


  4. Thank you, Julie. I'm so glad Karalee is going to school close to home and commuting. I don't know how I'd make it without her. I hope Katelyn does the same. Sure would be nice to have them both home a while longer.


  5. Shelli, what a beautiful post. And I love the way you've shown us your daughter—through your beautiful photos and your words. I hope I get to meet her one day. I long to be the kind of person who leaves imprints of love on others' hearts too. To do that, I need to be willing to step beyond my comfort zone and open my heart to others. Thanks for this post. Just lovely!


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