Dear 16 Year Old Me

Dear Past Kendra,

You may not believe this, but I am you. Eight years down the road. I am here to tell you that life will change as you know it. I know what you are going through right now, and trust me, it will get better. You will cry, you will laugh, you will heal.

With that, you should put down that drink, and pick up a book. It’s your Senior year in high school. Make the most of it. Don’t throw it away. Get your ass back into that science class right now, and learn how the Earth is made up of beautiful rocks. Maybe if you stay in class, you won’t get caught cheating. Get better grades, and trust in your friends when they say, “You’ll regret this.” Maybe if I had listened to them, things would have been different. Instead, I did the opposite. Man, the consequences of that were some hard stuff.

Put down that drink and spend more time with your parents. I know it may seem crazy, being 16 and thinking your parents aren’t cool. Well, let me tell you. Dad is crazy smart and you will learn things from him. Listen to him the first time about a few things and maybe you won’t have to learn the hard way. Except that does tend to describe us, doesn’t it? Mom is one of the most amazing people I have ever had the pleasure of knowing. Later, she will become the person you tell your secrets to, she will comfort you, she will help guide you back to the right path when you have fallen, and she will help you pick up the pieces of your broken heart. Don’t forget to apologize to both of them for being a messed up teen. Because really, you were a great kid, you just made a lot of bad choices. When you apologize, mean it. Don’t half-ass it. Your apology should mean everything because all they did was love us.

I will let you decide if you should get married. Because I believe it is an experience you need. Just makes sure it is not just because you want to leave the house, but because you really love him. Oh man, we really did love him. The others before him were nothing, and we can say he is our first love. “The World” by Brad Paisley will follow you throughout the rest of your days and you will realize it does not just apply to him. It does end, so enjoy it while you can. Be good to him; the best you can be. You were meant for better things, and once it’s over, do not wish for things to be different. They ended for a reason, you must let nature have its course. You will not regret it.

The first time you enroll in college, stay and change your major. Don’t give up because it is difficult or because you are working too much. Find your passion and stick with it.

The years will go on and you will learn to forgive the one person who haunts your life. You will learn how to live with it and it will make you stronger. While that question still runs in your mind from time to time, you will slowly realize it was meant to happen because, in the end, it made you the woman you are today.

Make that mistake I made with our second husband because it gave you the single greatest thing in the world. When you look back, it won’t seem like a mistake. Just a not so good decision fueled on your need to feel loved. Try not to dwell on it so long because it will hold you back and you need to be stronger than ever. Not just for yourself, but for your little one and what the future holds. There will be happiness after the storm, I promise. <3

Always remember, call your parents at least twice a week, just to say hi. They miss you so much, and there is no one in the world who will love you as much as they do. Respect them, and give them your all because they put up with you and the things you are going through now. It is not their fault. None of it is, so don’t take it out on them.

To the one and only; not always what I expected, but who I am. Find that person, and never let her go.

I love you. Xoxo.

P.S. Stop sneaking out of the house. You will get caught and it is not a pretty picture! But hey, at least they didn’t call the cops. 😛


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