In celebration of 12 weeks post surgery, I wrote a letter to 12 year old me.
Your 12 going on 25 with all the assertion of women many years your senior. I know life seems tough and dramatic right now, and for right now it truly is. I don’t want to be the bearer of bad news, but it’s going to be an uphill battle this thing called life. I promise, although the road is rough, you will never loose joy and you will always have loved ones with you along the journey. The cherry on top? This is the best adventure you will ever go on! It is SO much fun! Buckle up tiger; we have some work to do…
Since you will never actually have the pleasure of reading this, I’m going to warn you about some of the things that are going to hurt you so bad, your going to think your going to break. I promise that you are held in the hands of a Savior who will never leave you or forsake you!
Growing up isn’t easy. Not with the cards you were handed. Your going to see some things a child shouldn’t see. I know you regret all things you’ve gone through so far, and your not even done yet. Take what you’ve been given and use it. Never let your hurt of the past stop you from loving people! You may not always be the smartest, and you may feel like your foot is permanantly glued into your mouth. But no matter all your shortcomings, as you get older you will fall in love with a God of compassion. He will give you your greatest blessing of a compassionate heart! Cherish it. Nurture it. Not everyone will get it, but your call in life is to stand up for the broken, the lost and wounded. For in their shoes you have and will continue to walk. You will get them and you will want to sit in their muck!
You’re going to work many jobs. You will never be without work, so never fret about that. And for some reason, your going to fall in love with almost every job you have. You like working, so it makes sense for the most part. Try not to let the daily grind get in the way of seeing what God has called you to. It’s a simple thing, and if you miss it, you’re going to stretch yourself too thin!
Boys. I know you think that your dream man, Mr. Right, is going to come waltzing up a few days before your 18th birthday and make all sorts of promises to you that he will miraculously keep, and then the two of you will wed and you’ll be free to make your own family. Young girl, appreciate all the moments you have to be single. They are a blessed time to figure out who you are and what exactly you want. More importantly they are a time to figure out what God wants for you, and to learn His character. And you’re going to have your heart broken. I’m sorry to say it. I know some women have stories of finding ‘the one’ on the first try, but it’s going to take a few, rather humorous attempts, before you learn to rest in Jesus and wait on His timing, and then who knows!
The most important thing I want to talk to you about, the thing that’s most on my heart, is that when you are 22 your going to get sick. It’s a big deal, so there’s no need to pretend that it’s not. Although you will pretend, and even lie, up until the very end. There’s nothing to prevent this. It’s going to be the most painful, terrifying part of your journey, at least as far I know. The bathroom floor will become your dear your friend. Food will be your enemy. You’re going to feel like your loosing it all. You’re body, your friends, your life, your joy, your hope, your money, and your control. And you’re going to loose most of those things. You will be stuck in darkness for over a year before you see the light. You’re going to cling Jesus’ cloak and beg him over mouthfuls of painkillers and long nights with no sleep, for Him to pass the cup. To release you. He will. And when He does, your going to be so thankful for it. I can’t think of a thing in this world that’s harder than being sick, at least not for you. I also can’t think of a thing more wonderful than it. Always remember that your identity isn’t in whether or not your healthy, whether you make sense to people, whether or not you can even get out of bed, whether or not people judge, or whether or not you can help others. It’s in, and only in, the fact that Christ knew you’d suffer, and that suffering would produce sin, and for that and so much more He got up on the cross and shed His blood. And when you feel like your going to break, call someone. Stop pretending your not suffering. There will always be someone who answers the phone when you call crying. They are such beautiful people, the ones that stand beside you when you’re sick. Thank them when you can for all they do!
You might think mom’s crazy and that your sisters are annoying and won’t give you time to yourself. You probably won’t believe me when I say they’ll become your best friends. I know you think you are so fat, and not nearly as pretty as the other girls. Someday that won’t matter, you’ll think your body is perfect because you will fight for your life with it and you will succeed. I know you don’t know Jesus yet, when you meet Him, your going to fall in love! You’ll hit the pavement with your faith and you’ll never look back.
These are simple things in life, but they make who you are. It might not look like how you expected it too, but that’s only because it’s so much better than you could have ever imagined!