To My Younger Self, These Are The Things I Wish You Learned Sooner

Joshua Fuller

To my fifteen-year-old self,

I’m going to tell you that the next ten years of your life will be the best and worst years so far. You will have ups and downs. You will make memories that you hold dear to your heart and memories that you want to forget.

You will love and you will lose.

You will give your heart to boys who sing sweet songs about you and those same boys will make you question everything. You will learn how to break down your walls only to be forced to build them back up. Your heart will become your most sacred entity and you must protect it with all of your being. You will break hearts and have your heart broken over and over.

You will underestimate how much this will hurt. You will feel like giving up but you will be stubborn and refuse to let the darkness win. You’ll learn that your vulnerability is a strength. The way you love will become your favourite thing about you. When you love, you will give your entire being and trust in the process. You won’t regret loving this way, even when loving becomes losing. Do not turn away from love, but be smart about it. Acknowledge that it isn’t always meant to be. Spend less time hating your past lovers and more time grateful to have loved at all.

Your biggest battle will be the internal fight against yourself. You will hate yourself and continue to struggle for years.

This is still a work in progress.

You will look in the mirror and only see your imperfections. It won’t be until you are in your twenties that you will begin to win against the voices in your head. You will start to accept who you are and attempt to love yourself. You will win some days and others you will lose. You will cry about the fat you can grab around your hips. You won’t eat some days. Calories will become your enemy. But you should know that your body is beautiful; and not because of the shape of your hips or the size of your breasts. Your body is beautiful because it can hug the ones you love the most. It allows you to explore, to travel and to dance late into the night. Those arms you hate will allow you to keep your future children safe.

Your body screams of strength.

Every scar and every stretch mark is just another piece to this puzzle we call life. Men will marvel at the curves you conceal. Your partners will look at you like you are perfect, despite the lumps and bumps you see. They will tell you, you are beautiful. Accept this to be true. Don’t treat your body like the enemy, treat it like your oldest friend. Continue to love yourself, your future self will be thankful.

I wish that we learned to be gentle to ourselves earlier. That at fifteen you think you have the world figured out, but the truth is: you don’t know anything yet. Be patient, be kind and be strong. You will become a woman you never thought you would be, a woman that will make you proud. You will learn that kindness is your greatest strength, and that you deserve to take up space in this world.

It will be an uphill battle, but you will be victorious.

Ten years from now, we will meet and walk together through the rest of our years. We still have so much more to learn but we will do it together. We will continue to remain hopeful for the future and proud of our past.

Remember, I love you already.

Your future self. TC mark

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