to me...

As a thirty-eight year old with too many scars, I would love to talk to eleven-year-old me. Twelve-year-old me. Thirteen-year-old me.

Things I would tell me? Hmmmm.

Best sweatshirt ever and a most epic Swatch watch.  Winning.





You are beautiful. You. You with the buck teeth, coke bottle glasses, permed bangs, and the baby chubbiness. You are absolutely beautiful in your purple plaid shirt and your purple cowgirl jeans. Know that and feel it. You will lose the glasses, grow into the teeth, and grow out the bad perm, but even if you don't- you are beautiful. Inside and out.

You matter. You have as much of a place in this world as everyone else. You may not feel loved, you may feel invisible but you are seen and adored by more people than you know. You make a difference in this world, big and small. You may feel so invisible that you think you cannot hurt people because you don't even count, but you do. Handle people's hearts carefully, and realize that you matter- your pebbles skim the water and create bigger waves than you can ever understand. You are not, nor will you ever be invisible.

Eat the peach from the tree. Eat the Mississippi mud cake that your Mema makes. Drink the horchata from the vendor in Monterrey. Taste it all and savor it twice. Remember to put food in its place. Enjoy it for what it is, your grandmother's love or a bit of sweet on a summer day. Don't give it your power. Don't use it to stuff down sadness, or push your feelings away. Don't waste your time obsessing about it's fat grams, carb grams, calories, glycemic whatever. Make sure it helps you, not hurts you, and savor the bite.

Don't give away your power. Ever. It is far too easy in this world to give away your power without meaning to. You may make bad choices. You may marry an asshole. You may love an addict. You may heap bad choice upon bad choice, but take ownership of each choice and learn from them. If you spend your life blaming the asshole or being the victim of the addict, you give away any power that you actually have. Hold onto tight to your strength and power- they will often be what gets you through. Being the victim will work for a time, but the price is higher than anything you will want to pay. Own your choices, learn from them, and move forward.

You are going to encounter wonderful amazing spirits in this world, along with some epic douchebags. Embrace the amazing ones, be grateful for them, and surround yourself with their goodness. Look at the five people you spend the most time with, and realize that you are holding a mirror. Surround yourself with the wonderful you want to be.

Be present. Simple enough. Hug your loved ones. Tell em you love em. Eat the peach. Drink the wine. Run til your lungs burn. Sing at the top of your lungs. Hula hoop. Turn off your connected gadgets and connect with what's around you.

Speak kindly to yourself. You would never tell your bestie the horrible things you tell yourself. Speak to yourself like you would speak to your best friend. Or your dog. Be your own biggest fan, and tell your inner critic to suck it. And if she appears again, whispering snarls and asides, tell her again. Be gentle with yourself, be your own best friend. You deserve grace and gentleness.

I'd tell her all of this. And I would tell her she is loved and adored. No matter what.


(Thanks to my Evelyn for the picture- doncha wish we had known how beautiful and amazing we were then? XOXO)

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