Dear younger me,
It’s crazy to think life has gone by so fast already.
I wish time travel actually existed, so maybe you would have the chance to rewrite some things in our life that didn’t go exactly as planned. But, then again life is unexpected and that’s the beauty of it sometimes. Like how something could happen and shipwreck your reality, but make you as a person.
Ash, I wish I could tell you that you’ll grow up and become this girl who has life all figured out and everything together, but you don’t. And that’s okay. I want you to know that it’s perfectly fine to not be perfect in life. Somewhere along the road, I think we picked up the mentality that you’ve got to be perfect and happy all the time to be loved or feel loved. Somewhere someone put conditions on how much they loved you, and I want you to know that you should never have to work for someone’s love. You are enough. And if someone decides for themselves that you aren’t, let them leave. Because you are worth so much more than that. Please believe and accept that everyday.
I want you to know that God’s love is not the same as the love humanity offers. The love of the world tells you that you have to fit in all of these boxes. Let me set you free for a sec. You will NEVER fit into the mold of the world, no matter how hard you try. That’s perfectly fine though! You’re you, so never try to imitate another. If God would have wanted you otherwise, He would have made you otherwise. If He wanted you a little taller, you would be. If He wanted you less awkward, you would be. If He wanted you to put your heart on the line less, He would’ve created you a little less open hearted. Ash, you share your heart with everybody whether they are the wrong people or the right people. I think that makes you pretty brave. Sometimes it gets us hurt, but I would hate one day to read a letter older me wrote to present me and find out that future Ashley is cold and bitter, because she stopped letting people in. Love and share often, it’s what gives you happiness. Trust me, I know ya.
Take some time in between caring for others to care for yourself. You tend to put other’s happiness above your own. That’s both an attribute and weakness. Never get too selfish to where all you care about is you. But don’t belittle yourself and beat down your worth, because you deserve to be happy too. Ash, your happiness is always found when you learn to love yourself and spend time in God’s love. I think sometimes we give Jesus the characteristics of the people who have wronged us. But always remember, He is the exact opposite. Not once has He let you down. He still loves you, even when you place wrong labels on Him. He knows your struggles and He understands. Remember Him always and constantly run like a prodigal to His arms.
I know that you at 8, 12, 16, or even 18 will never read this. I think this letter to you is really a letter to me. I look back on all the times where I struggled and just wish I could go back and tell myself all of this and more. I look at the different stages of Ashley I’ve been and just wish I could tell each version of my younger self that I love her. That despite where she’s at, she’s okay. She’s forgiven. She’s loved. And that she’s gonna do great things.
I think that’s what Jesus says to us, Ash. Each version of ourself He loves. We change as humans. God knows that, and He knows us. He loves each version of you. Believe that.
Sincerely yours… the March 15, 2016 version of Ashley.