What I Know Now

A book with that title, edited by Ellyn Paragons, has had me thinking about this. The book is a collection of letters by women to their younger selves.  Really incredible women like Beverly Sills , Ann Curry, Madeleine Albright, Olympia Dukakis..Just a group of unrelated women who have the life and self-awareness to see how the past links to today.

It takes more thought than you would expect. What age of me would I write to?  Have I learned a thing or two since then? Would I really want to know what I know now back then? Wouldn’t that be stealing experiences that shaped me?

Whatever. I’m going for it.

To my 13 year old self:

You are already so much of  who you will be. I know that you feel uncertain and singular, but that self~reflection and focus on the  internal will blossom into a passion for a life that values the journey.

Bell-bottoms do not make you cool. Having to share them with your sister just shows how smart mom was. The outside is how your peers measure value, but it won’t always be that way .  God is  speaking truth into your life. I promise you that you will learn to recognize and love that Voice.

Boys grow up, and most will leave childhood behind, but not all. Try to remember that core values will almost always remain core values, but give what you would like to receive. You will grow up, and so will they. Have some patience, with them and with  yourself and guard what is precious about you to invest with the right man.

The only person you can change is you. You are not in control of everything in your view. Manipulating others is not the same as being persuasive. Getting what you want isn’t the same as getting what you need.

You will grow to love journaling. Start now.

That love for music? It will stay and take root as a love language. Fan that flame dear one.

Your sisters really are your best friends. They matter. Treat each gently.

Making mistakes is part of all of it. You will miss the mark and have mis-steps. Everything has a way of working out. Just remember that you are no mistake.

It all goes so quickly, Susan.

Value this day.