Dear Younger Me

Have you ever wanted to go back in time?
I have.
If I did, I wouldn’t change anything, but I would tell myself a few things.

I’d go back to December 1994 and tell teenage Jill that in 8 short months, right before she starts her Senior year, she’s going to have a pivotal day at the Ashland Town Center.
A seemingly regular day in August is going to change the course of her history.
That she is going to meet a boy with silky blonde hair and long gangly arms who is going to love her fiercely and unconditionally from the very beginning.
Even when she doesn’t love herself.
I’d go back in time to December 1995 and tell 17 year old Jill that the boy she found at the mall that day, the one who gave her stuffed pig slippers crudely wrapped in only wrapping paper will next Christmas give her an engagement ring.
There will be no hesitation.
And I’d say to a barely 20 year old Jill that Christmas 1998 will make her a bride for the first and only time of her life.
I’d then tell her that the upcoming years will be simple but hard.
College degrees, jobs working commission and miles of ministry will give her lots of memories.
Hang onto each of them because in between those memories he will write you love letters, and do dishes, and thousands of loads of laundry.

Life is about to get busy and you’ll start to forget the little things.
I’ll tell her that he will be the standard to which all husbands should be.
I’d tell her that life is going to settle in but don’t allow herself to get comfortable.
Comfort in a marriage can be a dangerous thing that seems like a good thing, but it’s something the enemy will bring about to steal, kill and destroy the destiny that God has for a couple.
Because comfort can bring with it entitlement and feeling like roommates with the man of her dreams is not a way to spend 10- 70 years of her life.
The boy she meets at the mall will one day give you two amazing boys.
Raising them will literally will be the hardest thing you ever do.
They’ll be worth it though because it’s only the hard stuff is worth it.
I’ll tell her that around Christmas 2009, she and the boy at the mall will lay to rest the dreams of sweet one.
I’ll tell her that the years surrounding that time she will call the “deep dark” but the promise and the love of Christ and the fierce love of the boy at the mall will pull her out of it.
I’ll tell her to hold on and not give in to the “deep dark”  because God will redeem the time the enemy stole from her heart with the birth of two daughters she never knew she wanted.
I’ll tell her to hold on to the many simple adventures that she’ll overlook each and every day.
Because the days are long, but the years will be short.

As the years go on she’ll forget more and more

I’ll tell her to please love herself.
Please be kind to herself.
One day she will be almost 40 and she’ll wish she was as “fat” as she was when she thought she was 16 and fat. 🙂
Because one day her actions and words will shape her boys into the kind of woman they will one day love and will shape the girls into how they will love themselves.
I will tell her to keep loving others.
Even especially the ones who don’t deserve it.
Because guess what?
None of us do.
We all deserve the worst, but God sent His son to give us the Best.
I will tell her to love life and live life to the fullest, even in little ol Russell Kentucky.
Because it’s the only life she’ll have, it will be one that honors God and it will be a tremendous ride.
Happy Anniversary to the boy at the mall.
There’s no one else I would want to ride with.


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