The year is 1998, I am in Jr High and filled with anxiety, disappointment and depression. The ever pulling need for acceptance is at an all-time high. I was looking for my crew in places no 13 year old should even be contemplating! I would weigh myself often and then go into a negative self talk spiral about how I "should look, act, be".
Even though it has been years since this photo of me was taken I still see my own teenage angst in the kids I see on the daily. A lot has changed and it seems that it is even harder out there for a kid.
Not only is this an open letter to myself but also to those of us that have kids in our lives now. Use this letter as a reminder the next time you find yourself annoyed at how kids see the world. Their view might be different or even limited but it doesn't mean that what they are seeing, and how they are feeling isn't as important.
If I could tell my 13-year-old self some things I would start here.
These are the first times you are being introduced to feelings of abandonment, rejection and everything in between and it all seems scary AF! But show yourself a bit of grace, this is the first time you are feeling all the things! Eventually, it will stop hurting. You will learn to love yourself and the world will love you back.
It has never been about the number of friends you have, it is all about the connection and the relationship that you treasure.
If you want people to see the kindness in you, you have to be kind too! This will take practice but once you are good at it, you will be THE BEST AT IT!
When you feel scared - breathe. Then go home. You will always be able to go home.
Don't be scared when you realize that the job you want isn't even a thing yet!
Your worth is not matched by your work title.
People will always tell you that you are an old soul, this is never meant to be negative.
Never stop journaling. You will treasure all of the keepsakes and the memories that you keep track of. You might even use them as teaching tools!
You will always find comfort in other people's stories. Never stop using books and music as forms of self care. You will learn a lot about relationships and yourself this way.
It takes strength and courage to ask for help.
It takes just as much strength and courage to say that you are wrong or that you are sorry.
Even Einstein made mistakes! Don't hold anyone's shit against them, help them instead.
We are all scared, even the adults.
You are a miracle in motion.
Dude, do yourself a favour and shave with the grain!
You are loved
We 'gon be ok