If I had ever found a letter from my future self I am pretty sure I would have believed it. I would have also thought it was cool as heck!
There are so many things I would tell my younger self. I would start by telling myself that contrary to what I was being told, I was not too fat to be loved. It’s funny, I have never been fat enough to draw attention from strangers (as far as I know) but from the age of 13 I was told I had a weight problem. I hate going down this road because in order for this to make sense I have to disclose the fact that I wasn’t fat at 13. I was just going through puberty, which was hard enough, but my dad made it harder. He coaxed me into trying so many diets. It made me miserable. I am not sure what I could have done at that age, but if I could I would tell myself to tell him to bug off.
Until I met my now husband I was pretty sure I would never have a serious relationship, much less marry and have kids. I felt I wasn’t attractive enough. I didn’t have the tight hot bodies that young women were supposed to have. I spent a lot of time hiding. I had resigned myself to be the ugly fat chick that tagged along with friends but nobody hit on her. Because I believed as I did I also shut down anything before it even began. I would tell my younger self to not miss out on life because of this. Maybe I would have dated more, I don’t know. I also don’t know that it even matters but I wish I had been more happy with what I looked like.
I think a letter to myself would read something like this:
It’s me, you, an older you. I am writing to you (from the future) because even though I don’t want to change my past I do want to impact your present. By default, I suppose, any advice I give (should you choose to take it) could change our lives. I hope you’re still with me.
Right now you’ve just moved back to PR and you’re faced with many changes. Lots of new things. You’re going to be okay. You’re going to make friends, you’re going to be happy at your new school. Your dad is going to continue nagging you about your weight. He is going to police your body and what you put in your mouth. As a result you will try to time your meals to when he’s not around. You will overeat and later on you will actually be fat, but that’s ok. I don’t think fat is wrong, or ugly but these maladaptive behaviors aren’t healthy. Keep that in mind. Also keep in mind that your dad is wrong. So wrong, and I would curse up a storm about this but I won’t. Be your own advocate. Own your body. It’s not his, or for him. It’s only yours.
You are currently very averse to trying drugs. Keep that up. You will not miss anything by avoiding that crap. I realize this letter to you should be filled with things you should not do etc, but I feel strongly I should tell you that there are things you should absolutely keep up! You are a good student and this will serve you well. You will be granted a merit scholarship to the university you will end up at.
You will meet your future husband at university, thus proving wrong your current belief that you could never possibly be attractive to another person. After graduation you will be faced with a choice. You can either stay in PR for a graduate degree or you can go against your parents’ wishes and move to Florida. Move to Florida. The fight is worth it. Your future is in Florida. Trust me.
I don’t want to give too much away but I do want to leave you with the confidence that you are loved, you are wonderful and you will be happy. I am hesitant to tell you this, but I can’t not mention it: you will have a son. He’s beautiful.
I’m (you’re) still fat, and I’m (you’re) hot.
If you’re wondering why I haven’t included any information that could possibly make you rich it’s because I am still as ethical as you are now. And like I said before, I don’t want to change your future. I just want you to run towards it with open arms.