Dear Sixteen Year Old Self-
You are a wonderful person, much more wonderful then you give yourself credit for. You love dancing more than any of those snotty other girls on the team, so why do you bother to listen to their insults. They only tease and make fun because they are insecure too. Just remember, you’re on the team because you love to dance. They’re on the team because they want to be popular. One day you will do a thousand times more with your dance talent than those girls will ever dream of doing.
You are beautiful. You don’t need to hide behind t-shirts and ponytails. Who cares if you never go to Prom. One day you will meet an amazing man who will love you inside and out, just the way you are and tell you that you’re beautiful every single day. (Oh, and T.D. is a waste of all those hearts you’re scribbling in your notebook.)
Be nice to your mom and sisters. They love you and someday when no one else cares, they will be there with a hug and a Christmas stocking full of encouragement. Never take the ones you love for granted. You never know when they will be gone.
You don’t need to be perfect, funny, a straight A student, or devoutly religious to deserve to be loved. You deserve love just like everyone else. You are not wrong. You are you and that is okay. Never let anyone else make you feel like you’re stupid because you’re not. You have a lot going on in that head of yours. You’re smart.
Don’t get caught up in what other people think about your choices. Yes, you’ll make stupid decisions just like everyone else. But you’ll never regret them because you’ll learn from them and that knowledge is more valuable than anything. It will shape you into an amazing person. You’ll also make choices that other people will think are foolish. That doesn’t matter. They don’t know what is in your head and they don’t need to know. No one else can define your worth but yourself.
Try to refrain from judging other people. You know exactly what it feels like to be judged and it doesn’t feel good. Remember that you don’t know why other people talk, think, or act the way they do. Give everyone the space to be themselves, act the way they want to act and believe the things they want to believe.
Most importantly, if there’s something you want to do- go for it. Never let anyone discourage you or talk you out of your dreams. Take chances. Experience everything you can. Learn everything you can. See as much as you can. Enjoy life and cram as much fun in as you can.
Hang on to those friends who love and accept you for who you are. Remind them how much you care about them and how important they are to you. Make those friendships last for life and give up the people who bring you down or force negativity onto you.
One day you will be fretting about turning thirty and the fact that you haven’t finished school yet or that you don’t have any children. Try to remember that thirty is just a number. You will finish school- eventually, and if you are meant to have children then you will-when the time is right. For now, enjoy the fact that you have the freedom to do anything you want with your life.
Most importantly, don’t sweat the small stuff, laugh a little, cry a little and be yourself.
PS- In case you ever forget: you drive a manual transmission, it’s okay to be a book nerd, and red M & M’s are poisonous and always will be.