A few weeks ago, I discovered the Tuesday at Ten linky. This is a weekly linky that starts on Tuesdays at 10:00 AM, but you can link up posts throughout the week. Unfortunately, I was just a bit too late for that week’s prompt and the one the week after didn’t appeal to me. This week’s prompt is “If I could write a letter to the past me”. Having written many letters to myself in the past or future, you’d think I didn’t feel inspired to write one again. You’re wrong. I love writing letters that reflect on my life experience and the wisdom I’ve gained from it.
The challenging bit is to myself at what age I’d like to write a letter. I wrote a letter to my twelve-year-old self already. I have written a poem for my baby self as well. Let me make a twist on these two previous posts and write a letter to my baby self. She wouldn’t be able to read it, but isn’t that the case with any letter that requires time travel to be delivered?
Dear baby self,
Sometimes, in my dreams or daydreams, I see you. You were just born, June 27, 1986. The name tag on your incubator side says “baby”, since Mom and Dad didn’t have the time to think of a name before Mom went into premature labor. That’s what they’ve told me.
Let me tell you who I am. I am you, but older. I am 29-years-old now. Isn’t that a big number? Ha!
As you lie there in the incubator, Tigger the stuffed tiger by your side, I want to remind you that you are cherished. I don’t have Tigger now – he is probably at Mom and Dad’s if he hasn’t long been thrown away -, but I do have two other stuffed animals. One is Wally, the whale I got when I got home from the neonatal unit. Wally will forever be a reminder that I survived neonatology. I am here to write to you, because YOU survived.
The other one is an unnamed stuffed cat. I got it at an age when I thought I was too old for stuffed animals. I was almost nineteen and graduated from high school. The cat will forever be a reminder that I am now an adult, old enough to make my own decisions, and I don’t have to live up to anyone’s expectations but my own. You will still have to fight for your life. You will feel later on that you had to fight for so much more than just life. Whether this feeling is justified, I do not know, but you, or rather I can let go of it now.
You are now a grown woman. I remember, at the time I graduated from high school and got the stuffed cat, that this idea scared me. I feared being grown-up meant needing to prove myself to my family without my family’s ongoing support. In truth, being grown-up means letting go of the idea of having to prove yourself to anyone but you. Also, it doesn’t mean you won’t be supported anymore. I now have my husband and still have my family at a distance, after all.
Above all, I want to remind you, as well as myself, that you and i are good enough. We’ve proven ourselves by surviving so far and making it to 29. I hope you realize that you are loved.