There's this part in the very beginning of Louisa May Alcott's Little Women that has stuck with me for years. In a letter from the March girls' war-gone father (addressed to his wife), he says
"A year seems very long to wait before I see them, but remind them that while we wait we may all work, so that these hard days need not be wasted. I know they will remember all I said to them,
that they will be loving children to you,
will do their duty faithfully,
fight their bosom enemies bravely,
and conquer themselves so beautifully that when I come back to them
I may be fonder and prouder than ever of
my little women."