Dear Teenage Self,
Oh, how I wish you could see what I see now.
When I look back, I see you as one person but I know there were two of you.
There was the girl that the world saw and labeled. Then there was the girl that only you knew.
I remember those sleepless nights and days filled with worry, sadness, and confusion.
I remember the fake smile you would show to the world and then the tears, no one knew that you cried behind closed doors.
I remember all the times you broke down in front of others because crying was the only thing you thought you could do.
I remember the times when you would cry so hard, you couldn’t breathe.
I remember all of those horrible ex-boyfriends you dated and all the times you allowed them to neglect you and called it “love.”
I wish you could see how beautiful you are; you don’t need a boy to tell you that.
I wish you would’ve seen that you’re a human being with feelings, not a toy for these boys to play with.
I wish you would’ve known what I know now.
For starters, I wish you would’ve known that there was so much more to you than a pretty face and a fit body.
You have so much more to offer than fun and sex.
I wish you would’ve known that some “friends” are temporary. Some people are not meant to be a part of certain chapters of your life and that’s okay.
I wish someone would’ve told you that sadly, there are some people in this world that want you to tell them your business, not because they want to help you but because they want to have something to talk about with their friends.
I wish you would’ve known how bad a break up can feel so you could have prepared yourself for the storm that came with that heartbreak.
Heartbreaks were never easy for you.
Just because you made a lot of silly decisions with boyfriends doesn’t mean you’re a slut.
So you lost your virginity at a young age, that doesn’t make you any less of a person.
When people used to whisper about you as you walked through the halls at school, I wish you would’ve known they were just words.
You would never be what they said you were.
I wish you would have believed in your ability to write; I wish you wouldn’t have kept all of that sadness to yourself.
It’s okay to make mistakes, those mistakes shouldn’t define you. So why did you allow them to?
Those labels people gave you were just labels, and those rumors were just rumors. Like I said before, you would never be what they said you were.
You are incredible. You are beautiful. You are inspirational.
I wish you would’ve walked with your head up high, so the words wouldn’t have affected you so much.
I’m glad you like to see the good in people, but must you hold on to everything so tightly?
It’s okay to let things go.
I wish you would’ve known that your mother isn’t on top of you because she doesn’t want you to live your life. She just wants to protect you at all costs.
I wish you would’ve told her what was wrong; she is one person who would never hurt you.
You are sensitive, you’re vulnerable, and you’re fragile. People take advantage of that.
It’s okay to be those things, I just wish you wouldn’t have let people take advantage.
I wish you wouldn’t have let people tell you how you should feel about something. You may feel however you want.
Also, there’s nothing wrong with wanting to wear belly shirts and tight clothes, that doesn’t make you an attention seeker.
Not everyone that walks into your life will abandon you, there are many good people in this world.
Not everyone looks at you the way you think they do, it’s just your mind telling you they are.
I wish you would’ve known that along with the importance of self-love and acceptance.
I truly wish you would’ve accepted your flaws and seen how special you are.
Lastly, I wish I could somehow go back in time to deliver this letter back to you and make sure you read it.
Your “still making mistakes at 20 years old,” self