This week we are joined by Nicole from http://themumreviews.co.uk giving a very real take on parenting. Her letter takes us into a deep personal journey, Thank you for taking part Nicole.
Dear Younger Self,
Hi you, it’s me … you. I’m am the you that you will be 16 years from now. You’re 21 and you’re just starting your life as a real grownup. I remember you sitting on a plane from Seattle to London on 13 September 2001. Everything was changing, for you and the world.
Two days before, some lunatics had killed thousands of people by crashing a couple of planes into some buildings. As you sit on a plane just days later, your fear and empathy for the victims of that event tightens your chest as it jostles against your own personal, more selfish, fear and grief.
You are leaving the city you grew up in to study for a postgraduate degree in a different country. You’ve never lived away from your dad or on your own before. You are leaving your friends. You’re leaving the man you thought you would spend your whole life with.
I’m here to tell you that it’s all going to be okay. This is not a mistake. This is the making of you.
Sixteen years later, the world is still struggling, and scary, tragic things are happening today as well. But there is still hope. And there are still people who are fighting against injustice and against those who try to divide us. This journey is your best chance to be one of them.
Moving to another country will change your perspective more than you ever thought possible. Your views are shallow and narrow; your education is incomplete. This journey will expand your horizons and make you a better citizen of the planet. You will struggle to find what you’d like to do with your life, but trust me, you will find a way to make your modest contribution.
You will miss your friends, but you will make new ones. You will learn how to look after yourself. You will learn how to read a bloody map and travel through a big city without any help. You will party like you never partied before.
Right now your heart is broken. You thought your boyfriend – your first love – would wait for you while you studied abroad for a year. He even had the opportunity to come with you, but he didn’t. Instead, he found someone else and moved on before you even boarded the plane. That hurts you right now, but trust me when I say that a greater love is in your future.
In 3 short months, you will meet someone new. You will still not be totally over your ex. But this new man will keep surprising you. He will keep putting up with you and all your flaws. He will look after you when you get in an accident and spend a month on crutches. He won’t be grossed out when on your third date you have a bad case of the runs. When you have to leave him for a year, he waits for you. When you make big mistakes, he forgives you.
And 16 years later, you are married to him and you have two beautiful sons. And he hasn’t stopped surprising you or teaching you new things.
So as you traverse these years, from the you that I was, to the you that I am, remember to be grateful for the journey. Remember that change can hurt, but that it’s only from endings that we can find new beginnings. Your best decisions have been the ones that hurt the most. Carry on caring, carry on learning, and remember that it’s better to try and fail than never to try at all.
The 37-year-old you