Twenty-one years ago today, I started the day looking like that, and ended the day looking like this:
What would I say to my younger self?
I recently watched a "Super Soul Sunday" in which Oprah took clips from several interviews, and you heard guest after guest answer that very question. Elizabeth Gilbert said, "There's nothing I would have said to my younger self, because she wouldn't have listened."
Would I have listened?
If I'd have told her to buckle up, it's going to get bumpy. Pace yourself. Let the small things go. Just about everything is a small thing, would she have listened?
If I'd have told her her whole life is about to profoundly change, and there will be no going back. There will only be Then and After Then, would she have listened?
If I'd have told her she's stronger than she thinks, can endure more, has more patience and sheer tenacity than she ever thought possible, would she have listened?
If I'd told her she can love more powerfully, wholly, profoundly than ever before, would she have listened?
If I'd told her she is not alone, that while her situation would be isolating, never was she alone, would she have listened?
If I'd told her that the one that cried and cried and cried some more, to the point she thought he'd never stop, would make her belly laugh every day for years and years, would she have listened?
Is there really any point in this exercise?
We can't go back, we can't tell our old selves anything. What we can do, is try now to listen to our future selves. What is she trying to tell me from her vantage point? What do I know in my heart of heart, believe in my soul, feel in my bones?
We can listen to that.