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A Letter From My 15 Year Old Self

Growing up I kept a lot of journals that I often re-read when home for the holidays. One particular entry had a letter addressed to me, and I couldn’t help but feel thankful for the consolation and advice given by my younger self. Reading this letter now, at 20 years old, gave me strength during a difficult time. I hope that by sharing it, others may feel the same.

*name has been changed

Dear Rebecca,

I know you’re feeling lost. You’re feeling as though your drive, your motives, all of it, are slipping through your fingers. I know that when you’re up in your room working on all those assignments you agonize over, all you really want to do is lay your head on your dad’s shoulder while he shows you his favourite music; lay beside your mom while the two of you talk and she finger-combs your hair; or spend an afternoon lounging in your pajamas with your sister. But your anxiety towards school makes these precious moments hard to come by, difficult to enjoy.

What you need is to find balance. Because I also know that you’re feeling ambitious. You’re feeling overwhelmed with opportunities that have yet to come your way. You can’t wait to prove what you have, who you are, and who you’re becoming – because for so long people have seen you and treated you as someone lesser. You tell yourself you feel unstoppable, until someone you used to call a friend passes you by and makes you feel discouraged. You end up feeling like there is something wrong with you. But in your heart you must know that it’s you whose passing them by.

You are just already so far ahead that the reason it hurts is from the strain of looking back. This is why you’ve chosen to look forward to where you’re going instead. But you haven’t gotten there yet, and that’s why you’re feeling lost. That’s why you feel so alone.

So, Rebecca, here it is. Because I know you, I know that you want nothing more than to slam the door to your room and leave the mess for later. But you can’t. And I know you won’t. You’re still finding balance, but I know that you’re already halfway there. Why? Because you took the time to write and read this letter, because you knew you’d be able to take something from your own advice. You knew that instead of closing the door and concealing the mess, you’d open it wide and pick up the pieces instead.

Sincerely,

Rebecca

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