I can’t believe how fast this year has flown by! It won’t be long til “D Day” and some of the kids are already asking me what I want to do for it.
As usual, I say that I’d rather just pretend it’s not here, but that never flies with them.
I dunno why getting older is such a thorn in my side. I mean, I know we all hate that feeling of getting older, not looking or feeling as good as we used to, seeing our children grow up before our eyes. Maybe it’s hard-wired into our natures to regret the passing of time?
But then again, I’m not totally against it. As I’ve gathered more years to myself, I have realized that all the time I spent wishing I was older, “I can’t wait”-ing for my first-born to walk/talk/whatever…what a foolish endeavor!
How awesome would it be to actually be able to go back in time to our younger selves and give them a head’s up?
First, I’d tell Younger Me to learn patience. Don’t be so eager or insistent. Just let things happen, be prepared for whatever that is and enjoy each moment.
Then I’d tell Her to take better care of her health. Don’t see the diabetes as a curse or an enemy. Just accept it as part of the plan God has for you, then do all you can to be healthy. Don’t fall into that rebelliousness that makes you say, “Who cares?! I’m going to eat what I want, I’m going to ignore my blood sugars.” I’d try to impress upon Her how mad she will be once she’s older and realizes she could have done so much better. I’d tell her despite the non-athletic nature of her parents and family to be active. To learn the benefits of exercise and how to do it regularly. Oh, Younger Me, it sure would have made these days and our future feel a lot better if only you had learned that.
Get into the habit of reading your Bible. Maybe then we won’t have such a sporadic study time. Learn to pray. Yes, I know. You weren’t really taught that nor will you find a really good resource for this in your church or family. Dig into scripture yourself. Ask people who seem to have a great prayer life. Maybe they don’t know you need to be taught.
Granted, since I was able to make it to the altar with my virginity intact (yes, I’m serious) obviously we did a fair job of guarding our purity. But trust me, there will be opportunities when you can still let things go too far. Don’t think only “the home plate” is sex. All those other bases count, too. Let me tell you that years down the road, IF you attempt to “home base” now, the aftermath could be catastrophic. Even though you waited for marriage, there will be a long, rough road ahead for you sexually, but don’t give up. Trust me…it will be worth it. Don’t give up.
Don’t give up. Nope. Do NOT give up. Put that on a loop in your head. You will need to hear it OFTEN.
Don’t buy the fairy tale that everything will be better once you’re married. Your life is tough at home, I know, you feel ignored and discounted. You feel like your opinions don’t matter, your preferences are wrong, your ideas are stupid. But getting married won’t change that. Even though that boy you finally marry will be your biggest supporter in the years ahead, it won’t change the fact that your family makes you feel worthless. Learn to find your own self worth. Find it not only in Jesus, but in your abilities and strengths. Don’t throw those away just because they are not affirmed by your parents.
And then, when That Boy comes along who will fall for you immediately, don’t expect him to cure all your ills. Don’t expect that he can mend all the wounds you’ve accumulated to your heart over the years. Just love him better.
As for me, I regret the wasted time being mad at him for not “fixing” it all. You won’t realize that’s what you’re expecting, but it is. Your self worth will get so damaged growing up the way we did. Try and learn to lean on Jesus during those times. Don’t let the devil tell you lies about yourself. I know, I KNOW. It’s hard to do this as a child on your own, but try. Try harder than I did. Present Me is still fighting to deal with all the scars left by never feeling worthy.
Don’t let the betrayals of those you think are your real friends keep you from ever reaching out again. Maybe I should instead tell you to not expect everyone to be as deeply invested in the relationship as you are. Don’t toss your whole self into a friendship without measuring the other person’s dedication. Then, just be as good a friend as you can without expecting anything in return. That way, when they do hurt you, and they will, you won’t be quite as crushed. You won’t decide to lock everyone out and never find that ‘best friend’ you have always wanted.
I don’t think I’d have to say “Don’t worry about pleasing people.” because I don’t think we have a problem with that. I really need to ask one of my friends and see if that’s accurate. I mean, I don’t like letting people down once I’ve committed to something, but jumping through hoops just to make someone like me? I just don’t do that. But I think I will ask (and if any of the few who would be considered my friends are reading here, shoot, even if you THINK I’m your friend, chime in. send me a message or comment on this post!) …just to see if I’m anywhere close to right. I’m pretty sure that we don’t have to worry about being people pleasers.
Good job, Younger Me. You got one right!!
So what other things would I tell my younger self, the Younger Me? I dunno… but it’s something to ponder.
What would you tell YOUR younger self if you could?
Ecclesiastes 4:13 – “Better was a poor and wise youth than an old and foolish king who no longer knew how to take advice.”