Last week I read Dawn Camp’s letter to herself and Holly Gerth’s letter this weekend and found inspiration to write my own. Maybe you should write a letter to your teenage self too! If you do, be sure to link up with Emily or read others’ letters at her site which are sure to make you laugh, cry and reflect. Be sure to check out her new book, Grateful, released earlier this month. It is a great gift for younger girls and something my teenage self wishes she could have read.
Dear teenage self,
Savor every moment because time does fly. Make the most of your friendships and make deep/meaningful connections with people. Most importantly, don’t take yourself so seriously and take time out for service projects, like spending summers as a camp counselor… you’ll always wish you had and the time spent making money for college didn’t help much – the debt is still there and it’s manageable not suffocating like you were brought up to believe. Listen to your heart more instead of your parents and allow God to direct your feet. When people tell you that you are different, ask them what they see, instead of brushing it off thinking everyone is the same.
Don’t date the “same boy” but enjoy being with friends more and dating more than one boy – you’ll always wonder what it would’ve been like going to your senior prom with a different date. You are far prettier than you ever gave yourself credit for and no one saw all those zits anyway, except for those that were more insecure than you.
Spend more time getting to know your sister and less time making fun of her – although you think it is “fun” she is at a very fragile point right now. You will never grasp the fullness of her love until you are older, so much so that the thought of losing her makes your heart ache. As you get older you’ll realize that no one compares to her and that the reason you are able to love so much has to do with your relationship with her. You believe in yourself and your own independence because of how she has laid the path for you. She is seemingly different and you will always wish you would’ve stood up for her more and been willing to fight for others to have seen her side of the situation(s).
Push yourself to do things and don’t back down. Don’t tell yourself you don’t have a strong witness and really learn how to love others and defend them to those who don’t understand. Read your Bible more and learn as much as you can about your grandmother’s recipes because nothing will ever beat her exceptional southern home cookin’. And while we talk about your grandmother, be sure you tell her you love her and learn as much as you can from her. She will be gone in a few shorts years, and you will wish you knew more about her as an adult and woman of faith. Once you are married, you will wonder who she was as a wife and want to share her soft-spirit.
Although there are no “regrets” as they’ve made you who you are today, you will look back and sometimes wish you could have spent more time in the moments you’re living now (with no homework of course!). And although you never planned and dreamt about your wedding growing up, it was a very special day. Always stay true to yourself and don’t try to fight to not become someone you never were in the first place. Don’t ever stop dreaming and pushing to become a better person, because that’s where you will find God in your friendships and in yourself. Be the best person you can be for today and don’t have regrets about yesterday or already be thinking about tomorrow.