Dear Younger Self

Dear younger self. Here you are on the day of your Christening, with all your grandparents. Nan Torraville is holding you. She will be gone before your second birthday, but you will feel her presence with you all your life. You are named Michelle, but you will be known as Shelly.

Dear Younger Self…

Here you are with your cousin Cathy. It’s Christmas at Nan and Pop Torraville’s. You will look up to her and lean on her. She had the curly hair you always wanted, and you will have the straight hair that she envied. She too will be gone far too soon, and you will miss her always.

Dear Younger Self…

Here you are on your first day of school, with your best friend. You will always love to learn, but somethings, like math, will not come easily. Words and stories are your strengths, but you will have challenges learning when and where to share them.

 

Dear Younger Self…

Here you are on your 10th birthday. Your mom made you a special cake and topped it with the Beatles. They sang “Michelle”. It was your song. You are starting to not like being called Shelly, and maybe this is mom’s way of acknowledging your real name but won’t figure this out for another 44 years, when you are old, and looking back at your life.  You feel very special because you know that Mom doesn’t like to bake and you are surrounded by your friends, and everyone dressed up for the occasion.

Dear Younger Self…

When you get to junior high school, you will have a friend who shares your love of Star Trek, and Space 1999. You will sit at her house and try to imagine how old you will be in 1999. Oh my God! 35 years old! That’s ancient! At 35 years old, you will be married, and have 3 children. There will be doors that slide open when you walk up to them, though not everywhere, and you will be able to speak into a “communicator” that you carry with you.

Dear Younger Self…

Four years later, you will be starting grade 9 in a new school, in a new province. You will move there in the summer, and you won’t make friends before school starts. On the first day of school, you will walk up to the first group of girls you see and announce “Hi, I’m Michelle, and I’m really nervous.” This will also mark the change to Michelle from Shelly. This is also a time when you will start to feel different from the people around you. You are told you have an accent and use funny words, even though this is the way you have been speaking your whole life. You will make friends and you will spend many Friday nights taking turns having sleepovers at each other’s houses and having pancakes for breakfast.

Dear Younger Self…

When you hear the song “At Seventeen” by Janis Ian, you immediately feel a kinship with her. Every time you hear it, you feel like she is speaking for you. The funny thing is, that when you do turn 17, you will meet a boy who will become the most important person in your life. He will become your husband and the father of your children. You will share a life with him that you never could have imagined.

Dear Younger Self…

You are on vacation in Florida with Mom and Dad, John, Lisa and of course Ray. It was a wedding gift from your parents. You haven’t been feeling great, and that’s because you are pregnant with your first child. That is confirmed a couple of weeks after you get back home. This is the thing you have wanted most since you can remember. Three years after Sean is born, you will welcome Patrick, and three years after that will come, Meaghan. You will never know how much love is in your heart until you hold each of these babies. There will be such joy and some days when you wonder if you are doing the right thing by them. Trust yourself. They will all grow into such amazing adults.

 

Dear Younger Self…

You have a great capacity to love. Sometimes your heart will be broken by those you thought loved you back. Don’t let it change you or harden your heart. For each ounce of pain, there will be so much more love. You will always believe in the goodness in people, but when someone hurts you, you will get better at letting them go. You will still love them, but you will not allow them to cross the boundaries that you set up. There will be friends that stand by you, giving you love and support, even when you don’t feel you deserve it. You do.

Dear Younger Self…

You are a week younger than you are now. Still learning to trust your voice, to share your story. You will be told that you have a gift, and you will finally start to believe it.

Dear Younger Self…

You are only a few hours younger than you are right now.  When you read the writing prompt for today, you will be awash with memories. You will sit at the computer, looking back over your life, and marvel at how fast it has gone by. In some ways, you will feel as young as you ever were, and in some ways, older than you ever imagined. What you will know is that there is so much left to do, and say, and you will feel blessed.

Author: Michelle

I have filled many roles over my life: daughter, sister, friend, wife, mother, Black Belt in Tae Kwon Do, and Grand Master Bikini Competitor. All of these life experiences have provided me with a wealth of stories to share. Words are my refuge and my strength.

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