Letter to My 17 Year-Old Self

Dear 17-year old self,

I know it’s been a few years since I’ve seen you, but I just wanted to write and tell you that everything is going to be ok. All the things you worry about now are not really worth the worry, and I’ll tell you why.

The boy you’ve been head-over-heels with for the past 2 years that’s repeatedly drafted you into the “friend zone”? The brown-eyed Casanova you fawned and cried over? I’m going to try to break this to you gently… you don’t end up with him. But believe me. You’ll be SO glad in 8 years. Really. He’s not your kind of fella.

How about figuring out what you want to be when you grow up? Well, honey, we’re still trying to figure that one out. But I’ll tell you this… by the time you’re here, you’ll have a great job and an even greater by far husband (you’ll meet him when you’re about 23, but I’ll tell you about him later). So don’t worry about your career or your marriage, ok? God’s going to provide for you.

Also, you’re going to start dating a tall, lanky fellow later this year. You’ll be pretty puppy dog-eyed over him for a while, and he’s going to be your first kiss (gosh, it’s about freakin’ time, right?). After about a year, he’ll start really talking down to you, making you feel stupid… but start talking about marriage, too. He’ll buy you a “promise ring” (like a pre-engagement ring, I guess? I never did figure that out), and it’s going to freak you out. He’ll be the one to get you to smoke your first cigarette, go to your first bar, take your first shot (but don’t worry… you never really do develop a taste for whiskey). You’re not going to be ready for marriage, yet. Believe me. You’re really really not. So here’s what you’ll probably do…. you’ll tell him you don’t think it’s going to work out, and it likely will not be pretty. And that’s cool, sweetie, because his broken heart heals in a couple years and he finds a really good chick of his own. But my advice to you is to be blunt, not wishy-washy. Don’t break up, like, 3 different times, ok? That will just tear you both up. But knowing you, you probably will anyway…

You really love Black Forest,  I know. You’re sad you have to leave. But downtown is pretty cool, too. You learn how to waitress and you meet some pretty down-to-earth homeless people down there. So give it a shot ok?

Keep working on getting more comfortable in your own skin. I know you feel awkward sometimes, but it gets easier, I promise.

Hang in there,

25-year old Self

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