Friday, September 14, 2012

Letter to my 16-year-old self

Emily at Chatting at the Sky released a new book this week titled Graceful. It’s a book for teenage girls (right up my alley!), and in honor of the new book she thought it might be neat for bloggers to write letters to their 16-year-old selves.

(Neat? Really? Who even says that any more?)

Anyway, it took a while to conjure up images of way back then, but once I got into it, this was really fun. Hope you enjoy this blast into my past!

Dear Me,

It’s hard to even remember you back then. Tall (you reached your full 5’ 9” height in 8th grade), lanky (check out those legs!), and feeling more insecure than pretty much anybody else around you.

These are some things I wish you had known back then. But then again, isn’t hindsight always 20/20?

1. Life isn't always easy, is it? Sorrow and loneliness seem to be your closest companions, but they don’t have to be. Stop relying on yourself so much and let others in. Stop fighting with your sisters and make friends with them instead. Life would be a whole lot easier with a couple of advocates on your side.

2. You feel like a fish out of water in high school. You wish you had more friends, but making friends is hard. Don’t worry. College is coming, and you’ll make the best friends of your life there.

3. You so want a boy to like you. Any boy. Don’t waste so much time and emotional energy on that—it really isn’t worth it. Besides, you won’t marry a boy from high school (thank goodness!). You’ll wait for the right one, and you won’t even recognize him when he’s right under your nose. (You’re kinda dumb about boys. Sorry.)

4. You really want to make people happy. This is a good thing and a bad thing. You’re going to have to try to figure out when it’s worth it and when it’s not.

5. Watch your parents carefully. They’ve been through a lot, and still, they really know how to love.

6. You’re really skinny—enjoy it while you can, but don’t make that your identity. It won’t last.

7. Keep reading. Keep dreaming. And talk to Grandpa Earl about his travels because some day soon you will go to England, and it will change your life forever.

 8. That one time? After a football game with your friends? Do. Not. Go. So not worth it.

9. Oh, and the hair? Just don’t ever go there again either.

10. You really love Jesus, but you feel like there’s something you should DO to make Him love you back. There isn’t. Not one thing. He already loves you more than you know. Unfortunately, it’s going to take a long time before you get that. I wish you could get that now and rest in it forever.

Despite all of this fairly harsh criticism of you, I have to say that you’ve turned out pretty well. You have learned a few things along the way, you’ve become friends with your sisters, and best of all, you’ve let God take over.

You're in for a lot of great adventures--you'll go places, meet people, and do things that you can't possibly dream about right now. 

You’ve had a good life, dear Me. A really, really blessed life.



  1. I would love to have known you then.


  2. I was 5'7 in 7th grade
    and eventually topped
    out at 5'10, so I was
    THERE, girlie. In so many
    of the ways you describe,
    here. I think we would
    have been buddies!

    Beautiful letter. Loved it.

    xo Suzanne

  3. I sure loved that 16 year old girl! You were my lifeline friend through so much. Remember all of the notes we wrote to each other?

    I'm even more thankful that we are still friends today. I want to be more like you!

  4. Glenda, ditto.

    Suzanne, thanks. I think so too.

    Linda, you were a lifeline to me, too. Have I said thank you?

  5. I love this post! I love the heart, humor and honesty that you share! Even without all that great advice, it seems your 16-year old self grew up pretty well! :)

  6. What a great letter!! I especially love #10. I struggled for years believing God simply loved me. I used to think I had to do something to get God to love me. How freeing it was to realize He loved me for me ~ period.

    Thanks for sharing!!

  7. I can relate...except to the tall part, and the part about not marrying a boy from high school;)

  8. Love it all!!! Especially #3. I would have totally forgoten about the whole boy thing. Thanks for sharing. Loving the letters.

  9. Some parts of your letter sounded like mine. The lanky and skinny part. Isn't it wonderful to finally accept the beauty God breathed in us? Thank you for giving me a glimpse of your teenage self.

    Nannette, #119 from Chatting at the Sky

  10. I love that you waited for the right one.

  11. Love you so much more after these peeks into your earlier life!!! Thanks for coming back to the graveyard of my blog... Stay tuned full resurrection is coming!! xoxo

  12. Made me tear up...just love this:)