a letter to my younger self

Dear Jessica,

I almost started this letter by calling you Jess but then I remembered that you don’t go by that name yet…..weird….Anyways, I’m not really sure how to properly start a letter to yourself so I’ll just get right into it. There are a couple things that I want to tell you so try to bare with me. In my ripe old age of 22 I have grown increasingly long-winded. That shouldn’t really be a problem for you considering how many books I know you consume on a weekly basis. Anyways, here goes nothing.

I wanted to start by saying that you are so beautiful. I know how much time you spend questioning and doubting you beauty but I am here to affirm you. Sis you are GORGEOUS. Your smile is downright infectious, stop being so self conscious that it’s “too big” there is no such thing. Your body it to DIE for, I know people make you feel like you should be embarrassed or hide it but you wear whatever you want and whatever makes you happy and comfortable. You have beautiful hands, when the girls start getting manicures you won’t even need them! I know it’s hard to feel beautiful in the environment that you are in, but don’t let those white people cause you to doubt just how beautiful you are. You do not need their approval for that fact to be true. And you especially don’t need the approval of those boys. Their validation is temporary and you deserve so much better. I know, I know, I sound just like Dad. I’m sorry to tell you that he is unfortunately right about a lot more than just boys.

Next, hang out with Alyssa more. I know she’s your little sister and sometimes she’s mean to you and it’s not “cool” to be best friends with your little sister but she loves you so much and she is the best friend you are constantly looking for. Cherish her and the relationship that you guys have, it will get you though more than you can even imagine. Apologize when you hurt her feelings, that stuff can stick with a person for a long time. Having a sister as kind-hearted and funny as her is rare and you are super lucky. She’s great and way too smart for her own good.

Mom and Dad are going to be okay. I know Mom has been really sick recently, and Dad has been kind of distant and life right now is scary and uncertain at home but I promise she’s going to be okay. And call Grandma more often. I know old people are weird, and sometimes it’s annoying having to repeat yourself over and over again but she loves you so much. She’s got crazy stories and she’s seen so much and she genuinely wants to share it all with you. Every phone call makes her day and I know it makes yours too. It sucks to say, but she won’t be around forever and you’d be surprised how much you really miss her once she’s gone.

Lastly Jessica, be proud of who you are sweetie. You hide yourself from the people around you too often and you have no reason to do that. Be yourself! You are confident, intelligent, creative, passionate and more amazing that you have yet to realize. I’m still realizing how cool I really am on a day to day basis. But I want you to start now. Be you. Be loud, inquisitive, rowdy, funny, quiet, dumb. Ask those hard questions about life, your religion anything. Jessica, love who you want. I’ll say that again so you really hear me. Love who you want. Stop forcing yourself into the boxes that those around you have created, it is impossible to try to shove that dynamic personality into a tiny little cube of blah. I know it’s scary and I know you’re worried about what others think, and about loosing your friends but that doesn’t matter. The people who are meant to be in your life will love you for YOU. period.

I love you Jessica, keep being you.

PS: Stop straightening your hair I know you’ve been thinking about it. Mane Choice, Mielle and Carols Daughter are the products for you.

PPS: try some strawberries. I know the seeds being on the outside is scary but they’re really good, I promise.

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