Thursday, March 1, 2018

A Letter to My 9 Year Old Self

Hi Sweetie,

Some of the friends you steered yourself towards have just been using you to make themselves look good. They will never respect you. Stick with friends who you feel equal to.

Don't believe it when people compare you to your sister. Your edginess is there for a reason. Accept it without shame or regret.

Remember that magic "piece of chocolate" moment that evening in the backyard. That moment of insight, when you realized that the way to get what you want is to accept that you don't have it and move on, was important. You'll find it brings things to you that you thought were out of reach.

Just because you don't feel you have a talent for art, doesn't mean you can't draw. Your creativity crosses all boundaries and lights up every area of your life. If your teacher says you're not an artist, he is not right. He just doesn't know what to do with you.

Follow your heart and intuition as much as you can.

It's okay to cry. Save it for a not-too-public time, but cry all you like. Tears are a necessary function, made to release difficult or intense feelings.

No choice takes you down the wrong path. Some choices may lead to tougher circumstances, but each will bring you to what you need to know.

Just because your Mom wished you'd settle in one field (or on one hobby) doesn't mean you are supposed to. Who you are is changing every day, and not being locked in to a specific path gives you the freedom to explore. Perhaps exploration and discovery are your life path.

Pay attention to your dreams. Dreams like the one where you learned how to ride a bicycle can make life easier.

Understanding why someone acts unkind to you doesn't mean you have to stand there and take it. You are entitled to walk away, even when it is someone you love.

Do what you love and what comes naturally. You may think that flute is a good choice in music class, but baritone is more fun. Tuba even more.

Just because someone is older doesn't mean that what they say is true. Different people believe different things. Don't accept everything they tell you uncritically. You don't have to agree with them to get along.

When someone says you aren't living up to your potential, remember that no other person is capable of telling you what you are supposed to be or do to fulfil yourself. Many of them are hoping you'll fill their own unfulfilled dreams. Others may just be parroting what others told them. They are only human.

Think about the kinds of things you love to do: taking the dog to the river for a splash, solving puzzles, riding your bike, reading, singing harmony. These are all aspects of who you are, and you'll carry the essence of these wonderful things through your whole life.

You may not feel like it sometimes, but you can trust yourself, your life, and the loving intelligence that brought your life into being. You are unique, supported and needed.

(First published in Starry Night in April 2011)