I was looking through my miscellaneous writing pieces and found this letter I wrote myself during my writing workshop circle many months ago. The prompt we'd be given was to imagine you're yourself from the future writing to the present you. I think I may have posted this before, but once is not enough for this one.
I wish my internal voice always sounded this comforting and hopeful and full of faith in myself. I channeled this stuff from somewhere, though. It felt real as I wrote it. It didn't feel forced or fake. So, I read it now and then as a reminder. A reminder that is needed on some days nearly as much as breathe or food or water.
A little voice of comfort and hope whispering "That fear you're blinded by most days? Put it down. Look around you. You survive. You are a survivor. There is so much to see when you turn away from that fear long enough to see it. Look. Breathe. Let it in."
I want you to listen carefully. It doesn’t matter. It doesn’t matter what you look like or smell like or sound like or dress like.
It matters how much you love.
But don’t love just anyone, honey. Love someone who makes you better than you would be without him or her. Love someone who makes you laugh until you pee. Love someone who thrills you and teaches you and honors you. Love someone who shares him or herself with you without hesitation.
Don’t waste your time with the people who don’t love you back or who hurt you even though they love you. You can love them from afar but don’t let them stop you from living fully. Don’t let anyone get in your way.
You know all those times you worried about what you said and how it might be the final straw that would turn that person away from you? Remember all those times you thought people would see right through your facade right down to the dark, selfish, ignorant, judgey, small and petty you?
Oh, honey, don’t you know by now? You are worthy regardless. Every part of you and every cell of you is worthy and wonderful and the reason you sometimes feel so critical of others is because it’s YOU you’re so critical of. It’s just your own self-hate directed outward. Love yourself and and you’ll see good stuff in everyone else too.
We’re all connected. The tiny 82 year old lady next door whose husband died when she was 50, the man in unit number 3 whose wife is clearly in the end stages of cancer or some other horrible disease. The gorgeous Greek guy who owns the restaurant on the corner and twinkles those blue eyes at you and makes you nervous and forget how to talk. The crazy hairstylist who channels old Chinese men. The beautiful, multifaceted women who come to your house to write each week. We find each other and we need each other and we’re all connected. We’re all worthy, faults and all.
Remember what your beloved friend said to you? He said “I love you, bat-shit crazy and all”.
That’s what I’m talking about, darling. That.
Remember to take good care of yourself, sweet pea. You have been through so much and your job now is to learn to give yourself what you need. The naps, the massages, the time to sit and think and cry. The chance to travel and meet new people and breathe and stop racing around trying to be better better better.
If you can learn to give yourself that, you will make this loss a little less awful because something beautiful has arisen from its ashes. When you do, once again, find your days filled with work and possibly even a family, you might have the mindset of self-care a little more programmed in if you work on it now.
Give yourself a chance honey. You deserve it.
No one can take better care of you than you. Even if some wonderful man is worthy of your love and you find him, he can’t give you everything you need. You’ll need to pull from other sources to get all your needs met. The biggest source of all, the best source, hon, is you.
Also, don’t go around so scared to lose. It’s something that will keep on happening. You can live in fear of it or not, and it’ll keep on happening. So then you’ve got loss and fear. Why have both?
Live as fearlessly as you can. Walk right into the inevitable loss. There’s a whole lot of beauty along that road. And the loss? Well, you’ll survive it. Of course you will.
You’ll be very scared. Just remember to act anyway. Each time you do something that scares you, you’ll be a little stronger. You’ll build that courage muscle. Just treat yourself after you’ve done it. It’s a lot of work. I know it is.
I know your core and I know you’ll be just fine. Just let in the love and light and do what scares you. Live and live and live until you fade away. You only have this one chance. Don’t ever forget that sweetheart.