Sunday, September 23, 2012

A Conversation with 14-Year-Old Me


Today I am inspired to share something in this space. Yesterday afternoon, while catching up on blogs, I came across this lovely interview with Amanda de Cadenet, who hosts a show called The Conversation, and I was so intrigued by Amanda and the premise of the show that I decided to check it out. Several hours later, I'd watched the entire season and felt so glad that I did. I felt like I'd just had an epic conversation with some of the most amazing women (Gwenyth Paltrow, Jane Fonda, Alicia Keys, the list goes on), women who have gotten through the wilderness, so to speak, and have so much to share about lessons they've learned and how they've come to love themselves and love life. And my favorite part of each episode was when Amanda would ask each subject what she would say to her 14-year-old self if she had the opportunity. What's beautiful about asking this question of an adult woman is that she's most likely at a place where the pain of adolescence seems so pointless and all she wants to do is heal that girl she was and have her know that everything's going to be ok. But what do you say to get her there? How can you help her without altering her path? I woke up this morning with those questions on my mind and decided to go through the exercise, and, woah, by the end of my list I was crying (in a good way). What was surprising to me, what I totally didn't expect was that I really needed to hear all of this as an adult. All of the wisdom I'd accumulated over the years hadn't reached my heart yet. I needed to say it to myself, I needed to write it down.

So, here's my list. I'd love it if you'd share your own in the comments...
Despite whatever insecurities and weight issues you have right now, you will feel beautiful one day and people who are worthy of your friendship and love will tell you that you’re beautiful.

You are an artist who hasn’t found her medium. Try different things, explore, don’t be stopped by failures, and don’t ever think you’re not worthy.

You will fall in love one day (more than once), you’ll know what that feels like, just not anytime soon. But when it does happen, it won’t be the solution to all of your problems and it shouldn’t be. So don’t waste time waiting to be rescued!! Instead, spend this time figuring out how to rescue yourself.

When you’re older, you’ll discover that the coolest people are those who don’t twist themselves into pretzels trying to be something they’re not. So, be who you are, like what you like, and you will feel cool one day. Trust me on this one.

Take it easy on mom. You are the center of her world, and her absolute unconditional love for you will be the one constant in your life and it will get you through your darkest days. You are lucky to be loved so fiercely.


JH said...

Beautifully written. Here's mine:

Be independent.
Fully explore your interests. Don't worry about what people will think!
Spend time with family.

Tiffany said...

happy to see a new post from you, and i love your list. these are all things i would have told myself too.

athriftstore said...

I am so glad you wrote this! I needed to hear it!