Sunday, May 8, 2016

The Tenth Anniversary: What I Would Tell Myself

I'm sorry.

I'm sorry that you just turned twelve and your life is about to be turned upside down. I'm sorry that you don't fully understand what is happening to you. I'm sorry that no one is really giving you the full story. I'm sorry that you would probably refuse to believe it if they did.

I know you feel out of control and you're going to feel like someone other than yourself for a good month. Don't forget that this too shall pass. Don't forget that healing takes time. Don't forget that you are you no matter what your physical state is.

You will develop resentment for those you love most. It will buried for awhile and then surface level before you finally learn to overcome it. People you love betrayed your trust when you were most vulnerable and that hurts, don't feel bad about feeling bad but deal with your feelings in a healthy way. Anger is something you've never been good at dealing with but don't take it out on people who don't even know where it is coming from.

There will be times when you feel nothingness and wonder if this is what depression feels like. Times when you feel so out of touch with the girl you were just weeks ago. When you really just want to go to school (imagine that) and run around outside and do cartwheels and just laugh like you mean it. But you can't. Instead you lay on the couch for most of the day or sit for maddening evening hours with your inept tutor.

But Grace, there are positive aspects to this time. It will be so hard to understand now, but someday, you will yearn for those quiet hours, you will. You will come to look forward to waking up in the morning and watching the lineup of talk shows. Good Morning America, Regis and Kelly, The Martha Stuart Show and sometimes The View. You will learn about pop culture like never before and how to make blood orange cocktails. You will depend on certain movies for comfort like Cheaper By the Dozen 2 and The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants.

One day, you will realize the most amazing thing: that you can just sit for hours and think. You will daydream about your future home, your future family, your future ice skating career. It will bring you a sense of joy that had been lost. It will bring you immeasurable happiness and contentment.

There will come a time when you realize, that without noticing, you are starting to feel better. You will go back to your goofy antics and returning to your favorite activities. You will stop needing pain medication and start sleeping all the way through the night. You will begin to feel comfortable in your own skin at last and stop freaking out if you stumble or fall. You will find your new normal.

So Grace, newly 12, tiny, smart, precocious, funny, frustrating, stubborn, spirited, you can do this. You will do this.

And someday, when you're 22 and still small and smart, funny, frustrating, stubborn and spirited, you'll be able to look back and smile because no part of life is all bad. Sometimes, it just takes time to find the good.

-G-

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