Dear daughter, I know right now your self-worth is wrapped up in your appearance, your grades, and how many friends you have. But you know the other day, when you found out you didn’t get invited to the party and it felt like the world was ending? That kind of thing will be a distant memory before you know it.
Your need to fit in right now means that sometimes you compromise your integrity and do things that don’t feel honest and true to you. You’ll grow out of that, too, and won’t be afraid to do your own thing.
Today, the thought of having sagging breasts, gaining weight, or watching your face wrinkle scares you. You look at your mother and teachers and think, I don’t want to age. And when you watch women on television and online talk about how they love being middle-aged and they feel more beautiful than ever, you don’t believe them. Not even for a second.
That’s because you haven’t lived enough life to know what it feels like to be peaceful and content in your own skin (regardless of what it looks like) just yet. Believe me though, with each passing year you will get to know yourself and recognize what serves you and what doesn’t.
You will find true friendship and love and wonder why you ever settled for anything less. The number of friends you have won’t matter because you will have a tight circle of women in your life whom you trust. They will be your anchor, and you won’t feel the need to belong to every friend group or have a buzzing social life. You will see how rare true friendship is and so you will nurture and feed the very few you have.
FOMO will no longer be a thing for you after you have kids. You hate staying in on the weekends now because you feel like you are missing out on something and make fun of your parents or being content watching a show and going to bed early, you will be the same one day. And when you get to that point you will feel a sense of peace you’ve never known. You will have everything you need right in front of you and you won’t be afraid to be alone with your thoughts.
It won’t matter to you if everyone likes you. Instead of trying to impress others, you will impress yourself. You have learned through trial and error about what feeds your soul, and what puts you in a dark place. You will choose habits that your future self will thank you for. Most of all, you will realize that you need to make yourself happy and do what’s best for you regardless if anyone else is doing it.
It won’t be long before you will stop putting so much of your worth into your weight and your appearance. You will get to know what you feel comfortable in, and what style works for you and you won’t care about the trends or trying to fit in.
You will see that those sagging breasts, stretch marks, and soft tummy you were so afraid of, means nothing compared to the love you have for your kids. They are your everything and you will love yourself in an entirely different way.
You will care if your friendships and relationships are real and nurturing even if you don’t talk to your girlfriends often.
You will care if you are able to lie your head on your pillow each night and know you gave the day your best shot. That doesn’t mean running yourself into the ground, burning yourself out, or taking on extra work to look good even if you feel you are going to break in two. This means knowing you did everything you could do while keeping yourself and your family safe and healthy. That includes not losing it on them because you’ve worked yourself to the bone, didn’t take a lunch break, and feel guilty about asking other people for help.
You will care about taking care of yourself even if that means looking like you can’t handle everything that gets thrown at you by other people.
It won’t be this hard to love and accept your flaws. It won’t be this hard to recognize and own your strengths. It will get easier and easier to grow into yourself.
I know it doesn’t feel like it right now but if you keep listening to your inner voice, learning from your mistakes, and doing what feels right to you, it will come sooner than you think. I promise.