It’s my birthday! I am 40 years old today. To celebrate I thought I would write a letter to my 10 year old self, but then I changed my mind because hindsight is 20/20 and I wouldn’t really advise myself to do anything different. Instead I’ve decided to dig deep inside myself and let the 10 year old girl that still lives in there somewhere ask this 40 year old woman anything she wants to. So here goes…
10 year old me: Whoa, where am I? Who are you?
40 year old me: You are in San Francisco and I am you. Well, I’m the 40 year old you. Don’t freak out, you’ll forget most of this once we’re done and the rest will just seem like a dream. I thought you might have some questions for me.
10 y/o me: You are me? (taking a close look) I guess I can see it around the eyes and you’ve got my big feet…San Francisco?! I was born close to there in Mountain…
40 y/o me: Yeah, I know the spiel. So since I already know all about you, why don’t we just cut to the chase? Is there anything you want to ask me?
10 y/o me: Uh…(blushing)…will I ever get my period?
40 y/o me: (laughing) Yes, really soon actually and then you’ll wish you hadn’t got it.
10 y/o me: Really?! How soon?
40 y/o me: I don’t want to ruin the surprise, just wait.
10 y/o me: Do I ever get my hair to feather?
40 y/o me: No, your hair is just not meant to feather. I’m sorry. I know you really want to rock that style, but it’s just not going to happen and when you finally figure out that you can do it if you spend hours with a blow dryer, it won’t be in style anymore. Instead, you will get another unfortunate haircut that wasn’t meant for curly hair. Someday you will embrace your curls, but it will take you awhile.
10 y/o me: (blushing again) Will I ever get a boyfriend?
40 y/o me: Oh yeah! You’ll have quite a few.
10 y/o me: Yeah, right.
40 y/o me: It’s true. I know it’s hard to believe, but it turns out boys do like you.
10 y/o me: (looking uncomfortable) Cool.
40 y/o me: (laughing) I almost forgot how uncomfortable I would feel whenever I said, cool. I always felt so uncool.
10 y/o me: I know, right? The other day I used a bad word and it felt so weird. Some words that other people say just don’t sound right when I say them.
40 y/o me: By the time you are my age, you will be able to say cool without feeling weird and you’ll actually have to remind yourself not to curse because it still doesn’t sound right, but sometimes it just feels good.
(silence, but not the uncomfortable kind)
40 y/o me: So is there anything else you want to ask me?
10 y/o me: Not really. I think you are right, it would just ruin the surprise.I’ll just wait.
40 y/o me: Okay then I just want to tell you that I love you and that you are beautiful. No! Do not look away from me. You are beautiful and there is nothing wrong with acknowledging it. You do not have to bury your beauty or put it down or pretend that it doesn’t exist. You are beautiful. Happy birthday!
10 y/o me: Happy birthday to you, too! Oh, I hope you still get cake on your birthday ’cause I love it.