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Home / Articles / Columnists / On the Bright Side /  Are you there, Me? It's Me... Me.
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Monday, March 7,2011

Are you there, Me? It's Me... Me.

By Jonna Shutowick. M.S. Ed.  

Dear 7-year-old Me,

Don’t worry that you can’t write in cursive yet when your best friend can. And just because she reads Nancy Drew books and you still like Amelia Bedilia, that is just fine. Can’t tie your shoelaces yet? That’s what slip on shoes are for! I promise, you’ll figure it out in due time and it won’t matter.

Signed, Your 12 year old self

Dear 12-year-old Me,

Congrats on the shoe lace tying.

I knew you’d get it! Now you’re worried that you are not popular. I know it is hard to understand now, but most of these people (especially the ones who hurt your feelings) won’t be important to you in a few years. You will all find the group you fit in with and will get involved in activities that make you happy. Remember what Mom taught us: when people say mean things to you it is because they feel bad about themselves inside. It takes a while to get it, but you will. I promise.

Signed, Your 18 year old self

Dear 18-year-old Me,

I know you are on top of the world right now and you should be - you have your whole life in front of you! As hard as it may be at times, I want you to leave your options open. Don’t get too attached to any one course of study, group of friends or boyfriend. This is your time to explore and find out who you are. Listen to your heart. You are wiser than you know. I promise.

Signed, Your 25 year old self

Dear 25-year-old Me,

You are in such a hurry... slow down. You (still) have your whole life in front of you. You want it all - career, marriage, family - the perfect house, so you can be the perfect wife. Be careful with that. Perfection has a way of disappointing. There is a lot of noise right now. A lot of distractions pulling you in so many directions. This is a big time of decision making. Try to hear your own voice. Find a way to be quiet each day and listen to your heart. It knows what you want. I promise.

Signed, Your 35-year-old self

Dear 35-year-old Me,

And you thought your twenties were stressful! I like to call where you are now “The Jungle”: The homework, meetings, music lessons, sports practice... and you, still attached to that vision of perfection that is eluding you. It may seem impossible, but try to hear this: start letting go. You actually have less control over things than it seems. You will not be able to keep up with the Jones’s (or the Schwartz’s!) because they are also busy trying to keep up with you. Step back from the game and learn to let things be. And hang in there - in about ten years you will be tapping into all of that wisdom Oprah’s been telling you about since we were teenagers!

Signed, Your 45-year-old self

Dear 55-year-old Self,

Well, I am enjoying all of the free time now that the kids are older. And you were right about only being so much I can control! I still worry, though. Mostly about there the kids. You were right about us, I have found myself and am very confident in who I am. The jury is still out on the kids, though. I guess I have to have faith. I loved them the best I could and taught them everything I know. Now they are finding themselves and I am learning to trust the process. I have certainly learned to change the things I can, accept the things I can’t and now usually have the wisdom to know the difference. Hey - did we finally stop killing ourself at the gym and become a yogi? Is our hair gray?

Signed, Your 45-year-old Self

Dear ME,

Worrying is not useful. Do what you can, love deeply and pray often. Do less and Be more. You are a human being.... being what? Being you. That’s all for now, One thing about being this old, I do get tired more easily.

With love, Your 105-year-old self


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