Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Dear me: a letter to my teenage self

Today I'm linking up with Emily over at Chatting at the Sky.  To introduce her new book for teenage girls, Graceful, she offered a challenge: to write a letter to our teenage selves as a way to reconnect with that awkward time and maybe be moved to compassion for those in that time now. 

Dear 16-year-old me,

Would you mind turning off the Mtv and setting down that bag of chips and Mt. Dew for just a few minutes so we can chat?  I promise, you're not going to miss much.  I've got some wisdom I'd like to share with you.  

Let's start with Junior High.  I know.  You care to never relive those days again.  And thankfully you won't have to.  But you need to heal from some of those wounds before you move on.  You are not 'ugly'.  You are not 'fat'.  You need to stop believing their lies.  Honey, I'm telling you now, those girls did not know what they were talking about.  And that note you found in your locker... was mean and cruel and wrong.  You are beautiful, kind, thoughtful, talented, and smart.  So stop repeating those lies to yourself.  You are a Daughter of the King and precious in His eyes.

And yes, I'm talking about God.  Right now, you have stepped away from Him.  Not too long after you were saved and baptized, something dreadful happened to you.  I'm telling you right now: it was not your fault.  And yes He can forgive you.  In fact, He already has.  But you need to forgive yourself and allow Him to poor grace and healing into your life.  My child, He can heal all wounds.  Allow Him to bind it up.  In a few years, you will walk away from Him again.  Please know that He is right by your side through it all.  Stay close to Him as best you can.  He will be there when you're ready to come back.

You are a dreamer.  I guess I don't have to tell you that.  We are a dreamer.  Always looking on the horizon.  Striving for the better.  Can I offer some advice though?  Don't look so far ahead that you race past what's going on now.  This is an exciting time in your life.  Get out there and enjoy it!  Branch out in your friendships and make some memories!  Travel in college, after marriage and before babies.  Once children enter the scene, it's a bit more of a challenge.  (And yes, your life-long dream of being a stay-at-home-mommy, does come true... for a time.)

OK, boys:: are weird.  And they don't get any less weird the older you get.  Don't take offense when they always go for your best friend.  Your time will come my beloved.  My only piece of advice:  let the boy chase you.  You are worth the catch.  And if he's unwilling to go for the chase, he's not worthy of your love and loyalty.  When you do get him: don't ever take him for granted.  He is who God chose for you.  Nurture that love and that relationship and never ignore it.

Let's see, on a side note, there are some hair styles in your near future that you are going to want to look into.  Let me tell you right now:  no.  Back away.  And darlin' you are tiny.  Stop with the over-sized sweatshirts and t-shirts.  Smalls.  MAYBE a medium.  Your curvy figure is rockin' but the over-sized shirts do not flatter you.  Oh, and try to remember to tell your parents that when they go to sell a car to pay for your college, the Grand Prix is the wrong choice.  We all regret that one now.

I look back, and there are so many things I want to steer you away from.  So many mistakes you are about to make, maybe I'd like a 'do-over' for.  But all of those shape and lead you to where you are today.  Those mistakes are what God is going to use to show you more of Him.  I can tell you there will be more pain.  More tears.  More love than you could ever imagine.  Friendships you wouldn't trade for the world.  Memories that will forever be engraved on your heart.  And your parents: those people who boss you around right now and get under your skin?  They love you more than you know.  And in a few years, they will also be your friends.  I know...hard to imagine, right?

I guess I'll let you get back to what you were doing.  And by the way, enjoy your eating habits now, because in a few years, you will not be able to get away with that.

Your 34-year-old self

PS.  And no.  30 is not old.


Rhonda said...

I loved this letter to your teen age self. It blessed me. Love meeting you through (in) courage. Praying for you sweet beautiful woman.

Becky said...

Thank you Rhonda!