Monthly Archives: October 2018
On Friday night, I attended the Moxie Matters Tour featuring Jen Hatmaker and Nichole Nordeman. Nichole challenged us to write a letter to our younger selves as a sort of reflection on life. At first, I was skeptical because we all know Doc Brown said no one should know too much about their own future, but since I don’t own a DeLorean, I think we’re good. And the more I thought about it, the more I realized how therapeutic it would be. Also, since turning 40, I’ve been doing a lot of introspection. I’m writing this letter to me around the last time I let a guy break my heart. I picked that moment in time because it was a major turning point, both good and bad, in my life. So, here goes.
I need you to sit up for a minute and dry your eyes because you need to read this. I am not promising it will help, but hopefully, you’ll take a moment to breathe and maybe laugh a bit and most of all be reminded just how strong you are.
I need you to prepare yourself for the loneliness. It is real and painful, and she is one hell of an ugly mistress. You will battle that demon at different times the rest of your life, but what’s important to note is that you win every single one of those battles. So, I know right now you feel like the world is blurry and gray, but you’re going to get through this. In fact, you’re going to get over it in the most you way there is…a road trip. Now, I’m not going to sugarcoat it. Even in the present day, there are times when that pain you feel will creep back in at the strangest and most inopportune times. It won’t be as intense or crippling, but the truth is that just like a broken vase glued back together is never completely fixed, a broken heart is never really the same, again.
Which leads me to this: it’s going to be WAAAAAAAYYYYY more than a minute before you are willing to offer your heart to someone else. This experience changes you…not who you are at your core, but it changes how you trust. Sure, there will be little opportunities from time to time that will make you consider going down the rabbit hole, but you’re going to resist those and strengthen the fortress around your heart even more. Then, one day someone will cross your path who will make you trust, again, and you’ll open the gate and…nope…I’m invoking Doc Brown on this one…you’re not ready for how that turns out.
Outside of matters of the heart, I want to remind you to dream. Dreams can and will change throughout your life, and they’re not all going to come true, but I think you know that. You’ve got a good, practical head on your shoulders, but one of my favorite things about you is that you’re not afraid to dream. So, no matter how bleak things ever get in your life, never stop dreaming. The hope that comes with dreams is one of the last few pure things in this world.
If you haven’t figured it out by now, this life we’ve been given, you and I, isn’t easy. In the grand scheme of things, it’s easier still than most, but adulting is hard no matter how you slice it. Remember this though, nothing worth doing is EVER easy. You have to take risks, and you have to step out on faith. You have to believe that God is with you always even when you want to shake your fists at Him. And OH BOY…will you ever shake your fists at Him! Don’t worry. He can take it. He made you exactly who you are, so truthfully, He knew what He was getting into. Never stop talking to Him. Let me say that, again…NEVER stop talking to Him. There will be hard conversations, but the important part will be to have them because at least you’re still talking to Him.
In the midst of all this, He will bless you richly with the greatest set of family and friends ever assembled. These people will hold your hand in the bad times, laugh with you in the good times, and keep you grounded. And you will do the same for them. They won’t always have the right words to say, but then, again, neither will you. You will love each other fiercely and forgive greatly and not a day will go by when you don’t need every single one of them in your life.
Life is going to hand you a great many gifts, but the greatest of all will be your nephew. That’s right…not only does that crazy brother of yours get married, but he has a kid, too! Being an aunt will be the greatest, most rewarding job you will ever have. Cherish it because that little boy will grab you by your cracked heart and never, ever let go. It is in that moment, you will understand your purpose in life. He’s going to storm into this world a fighter from his very first breath. He is funny and goofy and smart…my word…is he smart! His face lights up every time he sees you, and he gives the absolute best hugs. You’re going to love it!
I know this may come as a shock to you, but I’ve left a lot out. Some things you have to experience as they happen, but I hope you can find comfort in the fact that you’re still here. You’re still kicking. Life may have been rough over the years, but you stood back up one more time than it knocked you down…always. You’re stronger than you think. I promise.
P.S. Alabama wins the national championship, again…a lot! Roll Tide!