3 years ago I was finishing my bachelors degree and this was an assignment I had to do. It is really powerful to sit back and reflect and write a letter to yourself in the past. When I made the decision to go back to school as a single mother I really had no idea how far I would come or where I would be in 5 and now 8 years later. Every time I read this letter I wrote to myself I get teary-eyed. Partly that may have to do with the fact that I envision the way my mom would have spoken to me in this way. 2005 was such an incredibly trying year for me, having my first child as an unwed mother, living in a state that never felt like home, and discovering my mother was dying all within the first few weeks of the new year. Loosing my mom was the hardest thing I had ever experienced and add to that the horrible emotional state I was as a 19 year old new mother and it's amazing to me, even now, to think that I made it through.
Although I am sure I huffed and puffed when I was given this assignment, it is something that I think people should just do sometimes. Take the time to really look at yourself. Look to your past and see how far you have come. If you could go back in time and leave a letter for yourself to find and read, would you? What would you say to yourself? Would you even listen to the advice your future self gave you? Should you? Remember that it is your past experiences that make you who you are today. Perhaps you don't need to change anything, just remind yourself that things happen for a reason and the choices you make and those you have made in the past have lead you to who you are now.
I that think it may be time for me to do this again!
Here is the letter I wrote to myself... We had to read these letters in front of our class and I could barely make it through it with out choking up and there were plenty of wet eyes in the room. I didn't really intend to be so... sentimental?... But it is what it is, and I am who I am.
To you, Julie in 2005, I say… Be strong. Be proud. Never give up and know that you can do it. You are a stronger woman than you ever thought you could be and life, with all its trials and tribulations, will work out for you.
Julie of 2010