Six months ago, on our way to dinner, I had a conversation with my 10 year old daughter.  I wanted to watch a movie and hang out with her for our girls night but she had her heart set on asking a friend over.  I said “Oh ok” and she immediately changed her mind and said she didn’t want to disappoint me.

I pulled the car into a parking lot and stopped the car.  I asked her to climb over the seat and sit next to me.  You see… this was an important moment.  This was the first time she had let my disappointment alter her own decision.  I do want her to carefully take my ideas and thoughts into consideration but I do not want to become her voice.  She has her own voice.  It was a fairly long conversation so I will highlight a few of the points I wanted to make sure she understood.

You have your emotions and I have mine.

If it is important to me you will know, with words, how I feel.  I will never make you guess.

If I seem disappointed and I do not say anything it is because it is MY emotion to work out… not yours.

Sometimes, I will let you know I am disappointed and when I do you will know you need to really think about why and then decide if it is something that should change your decision or your actions.

Never… be afraid of having your own voice!


I will always love you.

I only remembered this conversation when I received Gretchen’s guest post in my email.  She writes a brilliant blog titled Drifting Through My Open Mind so I hope you go and spend some time there.  Besides, she is always just so dang pleasant and it is beautiful.  Please welcome, Gretchen!




Ashraf Baig

Ashraf Baig

YOUR REBEL HEART written by Gretchen

“Can’t stop the spirits when they need you, this life is more than just a read through.” ~ Red Hot Chili Peppers, Can’t Stop

I don’t want my kids to listen to me.

I don’t want them to fall in line.

Toe the line.

I don’t want them to take my word as law.

I don’t want them to assume I’m right about everything.

Not about everything… maybe not about most things. I have some wisdom to impart. But I think they are infinitely wiser. They have not yet learned to give in. To acquiesce.

I want them to go against the grain. Before the world convinces them otherwise. Before they are conditioned by the will of society to bend and mold, before they hear that siren of the dark that calls to them to worry about what others think. Before that takes hold, I want them to find their voice and their path and their own way.

I want my kids to be rebels. No, I don’t necessarily want them to defy authority just to enjoy the feeling of rebelling. I don’t want them to start listening to bad music just to piss off their mom. I don’t want them to go off smoking and doing drugs. That’s not rebelling. That’s self destruction.

But I want them to find their rebellious heart. The part of them that operates on instinct and their moral code. The sense of what’s right that resides inside of them. I want them to follow their hearts.

I want them to feel freedom. The freedom to rebel. The freedom to act on their convictions. To stand up when they see something that needs to be stopped. To have the courage and the strength and the confidence to take action when all others stand by shuffling their toes and whistling in abject avoidance. I want them to have the courage that I lack.

I don’t want them to be inhibited by worries. What would mom and dad think? What would my boss think? What would (fill in the blank) think?

I want them to hold on to that natural rebellion. The one they were born with. The one of the inquisitive nature, the exploration. The fresh eyes of innocence. The one that has no expectations and no guidelines. The one that will take chances and take risks. The one that will give them the freedom to become who they’re meant to be.

This is hard, as a parent. I want to make sure they don’t get lost. Make sure they don’t wander down the path that leads to danger or destruction. But all I can do is equip them with the basics. Right from wrong. Good from bad. The rest they will have to navigate with just my gentle watchfulness.

So this is a reminder for myself to let go. And a plea for my children. A plea for all children.

Don’t go the easy way.

Don’t accept.

Don’t coast.

That’s not being alive.




Trust it. That voice. The one that beckons. The one that scares you. Trust it.

If it scares you, you’re there.

If it fills you with angst, then you are flirting with really living.

Embrace the uncomfortable. That will be the thing that will spur the moments, the ones that you’ll carry with you. The ones that will show you all of the amazing you’re capable of.

I trust you to rebel. Your rebellion will be beautiful. It will be the coming together of words, action, art and meaning that will reach far beyond your grasp. I don’t fear your rebellion. Bring on the push. I may pull. I may test. But I’m counting on you to continue to push back even more. Stick to your conviction. Let no one, not your parent, not your teacher, not your minister, quelch the forward motion of ideals and ideas.

No one and no thing is too precious to be questioned. Be wary, be suspicious of those who claim to be above questioning. Those who are deemed too elevated to withstand basic query? Those are the ones who need the most scrutiny. Those who have nothing to hide welcome intrusion. They welcome investigation.

The rebels become the activists who change the world. The non-conformists and the anti-status quo. They are the ones that move us forward. I want you to reach into that part of you and find the soul, the heart of what motivates you and don’t let anyone stand in the way of your rebel heart.

Because it’s always the rebels. They bring life. They bring vibrancy.

The rebels create the best music.

The rebels make the art that stirs something in us.

Jimi Hendrix.

Albert Einstein.

Benjamin Franklin.



Rosa Parks.


So be a rebel.

Don’t let anyone dissuade you.

Don’t let societal norms take hold and change who you are.

Don’t ignore your instinct.

Don’t let the doubt of others hinder you.

Don’t let the scorn of those who are afraid of change dissuade you.

Don’t let them get in your mind and change you direction.

This is your path, not theirs. Don’t let anyone stand in the way of all you wish to accomplish.

And most of all,

don’t let anyone trample your rebel heart.

8a36985dab5c63045cd3b2f6f16760eeDreamer, optimist, wife, mother of three. A wanna-be groupie:fan of music, books and movies. I am completely in awe of talent and those who posses it, intrigued by cultural phenomenons and their impact, and passionate about many things. I love to write but people reading my stuff makes me feel like I’m walking around naked. My desire to write supersedes my insecurities… at least for today. These things I write are the kinds of things I think about in the shower and are a supreme act of self indulgence.

52 thoughts on “YOUR REBEL HEART

  1. Pingback: “Rebel Heart” Guest Post on Hasty Words | Drifting Through My Open Mind

  2. Hasty, Thank you so so much for having me here. And I love what you said to your daughter. It is SO important that they never feel like they need to guess or decipher our emotions when it comes to them. This is one of those things that I feel like I need to explain to my kids. I just assumed that they knew it, but they tend to take on much more and interpret things differently. You are an awesome mama!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. So interesting to get your POV on this. You see, I was a very rebellious teen growing up (a long time ago!) and it caused me a whole lot of crazy life challenges that ultimately all worked out and I’m happy to be who I am after going through what I went through, BUT, I’ve been trying to raise my kids so that they won’t rebel and here you are telling me that I should let them take my/their path, so it’s very interesting and I appreciate your input because (obviously) it’s not really working w/my kids anyway, cause they’re teens, and teens were created to be rebels. SO, just thanks for these very wise words today, ’cause they’re just what I needed to hear. xo

    Liked by 3 people

    • It’s a fine line between rebelling for what you believe in and are passionate about and rebelling for the sake of rebelling. A touch of rebelling just for kicks is fine with me (if my kid wants to dye their hair a crazy color, I’m totally fine with that) but if it goes into self-destruction territory then I will shut it down. Fast. And I absolutely think that teens need rules. Because, as you said, it is their nature to rebel. If we give them nothing to push against they’ll continue until they do find the boundaries (and beyond, I’m sure). Of course, I’m no expert. I am just entering the teen years with my kids and I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t a little scared!


  4. I definitely needed to read this today. Thank you for your inspiring words to continue on MY journey and not letting others put doubt or confusion in my head, when my heart is telling me what God has called me to do. Thank you Gretchen for reminding me that my rebel heart is not worth squashing.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Oh, what a wonderful thing to say! I am in constant need of reminders as well. I want my kids to be much more fearless than I am when it comes to doing what they think is important or right or whatever they’re passionate about. I don’t want them to wait until they’re 40 years old to start to do what’s in their heart! I think you should absolutely trust your heart and your instincts. People who are afraid of change and “different” will surely try to dissuade you. Your rebel heart is absolutely worth fighting for.


      • My mom feels the same way that you do. I’m in my early 20s and just graduated from college so I’m living at home and trying to figure out MY LIFE and it is so overwhelming and the fear of going back to graduate schools has been so overwhelming, but my mom just reminds me to follow my dreams and my [rebel] heart; forget what the negative nancys of the world say about the thousands of dollars of debt (haha!) and go for it. I truly enjoy your blog – mostly because you remind me of my mom:) you’re awesome.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Thank you so much for saying that! And you’re mom sounds pretty awesome. I hope you find the path that feels right for you. That time right after college was so hard for me. I think it’s probably a difficult time for everyone. I’m glad you have such a supportive parent to talk to and help you through it! *hugs*

          Liked by 1 person

  5. *sigh* You’re so smart and so wonderful, G! Truly. And Hasty, I know it’s hard but you seriously rock at parenting.

    Don’t squash your kids. Don’t crush them. Don’t turn them into useless, scared nothings. Just don’t.

    Seems *so* simple, doesn’t it?

    Well done BOTH OF YOU. And thank goodness for you both.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you Lizzi. You’re so sweet and generous with your thoughts and words. A quote that always runs through my head is “Don’t break their spirit.” It was mentioned to me when I was trying to calm my unruly 3 year old. But it’s always stuck with me. I think the worst thing I could do as a parent would be to break my kids’ spirits. It’s the worst thing anyone could do to another person. I hope and pray I don’t ever unintentionally or inadvertently do such a thing.

      Liked by 1 person

      • You won’t. Because you care enough not to.

        Having been there, and had it intentionally done to me, I cannot TELL YOU how thankful I am to read that this is something important to you, and that you’ll shout from the rooftops that people shouldn’t do this to each other. Thank GOODNESS for you 🙂


    • Thank you so much Lisa. My kids are 14, 11 and 5. I wrote this is a reminder for myself as much as anything else. Entering the teen years is a little scary and I want to believe that my husband and I have raised my son thus far to be a good person. Anything beyond that is up to him. Not that we’re done raising him! I certainly don’t mean that! But I want to give him enough space and permission to find his own way.


  6. This is a beautiful philosophy for the caretaking of your children. With that rebel heart, and what they learn from experience, they will be creative and productive members of society. Eagles, not sheep. Bravo.

    Liked by 3 people

  7. Pingback: Loads and Loads of News! | Just Gene'O

  8. Loved this (both of you) 🙂 Thank you 🙂

    I’m more like hastywords’ daughter. I struggle with giving in to other people’s emotions, even when they remain unspoken. My BF is the exact opposite, and does a fair bit of trampling, mostly without realising it.
    I think I’m going to have to work on finding better ways not to be squashed…

    Liked by 2 people

    • I’m a lot like Hasty’s daughter too. I want to make people happy, especially the people I love. I can easily get swept up in other’s emotions. I still struggle with how not to be squashed. I’m getting better but it’s not easy! (and not realizing it is a HUGE part of the problem!) I hope you learn it at a much younger age than me! Don’t wait until you’re almost 42 like me to figure this stuff out! 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

  9. I love both of these posts so much! You two are parents after my own heart : ). Yes yes yes to trusting your own voice. I especially loved the part about scrutiny vs welcoming intrusion. Totally agree. Well done!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Awwww… thank you Molly! I definitely think teaching our kids to trust their own instincts is probably one of the most important lessons we can give them. And oh, those people and institutions who seem to think they are above questioning and scrutiny? Big freakin’ red flag, right?

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Reading this I think of what are probably the two most important, and some of the earliest, words children learn and must practice (often to parental torment) – “Why?” and “No!” – reblogging


  12. Pingback: YOUR REBEL HEART – Web-Log9

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s