dear fifteen

It’s been five years since you started putting your thoughts on the internet. You were innocent and not fantastic at putting words together. You were hopeful and excited about life and so very opinionated.

I hope the day is going well for you. I know you’re in the middle of finishing up classes and soccer season and everything is probably feeling a little bit heavy right now…….just keep breathing, my dear. I know you like that boy with the dark hair and knowledge of Latin words, but don’t start putting your name with his just yet. Promise me you’ll make memories with the seniors in public speaking, for later down the road one of them may mean a lot to you.

I wish there were a way for me to protect you from all the crap that is going to come in the next few years, but I can’t risk you missing all the fantastic times that will come as well. You’re singing Taylor Swift and Brandon Heath right now, but keep your ears open for bands from England and schizo-pop. Your little brothers are seriously pains in your patella, but try to keep your voice kind when you speak to them, for they may actually end up being kind of cool in a few years. I think you feel a little bit lonely, but that Emily Rogers is special, and soon you’ll be introduced to girls who will completely change your life.

Please, keep staring up at the stars and feeling small. Laugh at Dad’s jokes and hug Mom more often. Don’t slander Ohio before you’ve even spent any time there. Read lots of books, and don’t be intimidated by the number of pages or word size or publication date. Dead guys can still speak to your heart.

Don’t bite your nails, let your hair air-dry every few days, and don’t pick at peeling skin from a sunburn. Learn to like tea like Daddy’s, fall in love with Harry Potter, and come to appreciate a good cry.

Keep your chin up, kid—it gets better.

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