Che Guevara with his ex-wife
and their daughter, Hildita, on
her 4th birthday in 1960.
Below is a letter he sent from the Bolivian jungle to Hildita for her 10th birthday on February 15, 1966:
I am writing you now, although you’ll receive this letter much later. But I want you to know that I am thinking about you and I hope you’re having a very happy birthday. You are almost a woman now, and I cannot write to you the way I write to the little ones, telling them silly things or little fibs.
You must know that I am still far away and will be gone for quite some time, doing what I can to fight against our enemies. Not that it is a great thing, but I am doing something, and I think you will always be proud of your father, as I am of you.
Remember, there are many years of struggle ahead, and even when you are a woman, you will have to do your part in the struggle. Meanwhile, you have to prepare yourself, be very revolutionary-which at your age means to learn a lot, as much as possible, and always be ready to support just causes. Also, obey your mother and don’t think that you know it all too soon. That will come in time.
You should fight to be among the best in school. The best in every sense, and you already know what that means; study and revolutionary attitude. In other words: good conduct, seriousness, love for the revolution, comradeship, etc.
I was not that way at your age, but I lived in a different society, where man was an enemy of man. Now you have the privilege of living in another era and you must be worthy of it.
Don’t forget to go by the house to keep an eye on the other kids and advise them to study and behave themselves. Especially Aleldita, who pays a lot of attention to you as her older sister.
All right, old lady. Again I hope you are very happy on your birthday. Give a hug to your mother and to Gina. I give you a great big strong one to last as long as we don’t see each other.