Dear Older Me,
I see how tired you are. I see how weary you feel and how worried you have become about everything these days. I see how you struggle to find balance throughout your day. I see as you forget to eat and I watch as you choose the worst foods to try to soothe your stress, your worry, your disappointments. I listen as you cry when things feel overwhelming and you feel like you are such a failure. I watch as you stare at yourself in the mirror and wonder how that person could possibly be you.
I have watched you and felt the sting of each moment with you. I have cried with you and wondered how you could have forgotten the important things these years have taught you so today; how you could have forgotten how far you have come and how much you have overcome.
I want to tell you a few things. I want to encourage you because my dear, sweet older me…you are so much more than you are seeing.
You keep looking back. That’s your first mistake. You keep replaying every single mistake in your life in your mind like a movie reel, constantly trying to pinpoint the moments that you could change to make all those regrets and mistakes disappear from your record of life, but don’t you realize that the younger version of you made those mistakes and had I not, then you would not be the woman you are today. Those mistakes, one by one, grew you, refined you, hurt you and broke you just enough that you found Christ and you allowed God to redefine who you are. Those very mistakes, those very broken roads all led you to the life that you so deeply love and thank God for today. Stop looking back. Those days are gone. That’s not who you are. Instead of trying to figure out how to fix younger you, focus on who you are now and embrace this season of your life with grace, compassion, understanding and acceptance.
You keep saying that you will start tomorrow. Our tomorrows are never guaranteed. Why do you keep trying to hold off on the important things out of fear? Has God not shown you time and again that He has called you to be present in TODAY? Stop putting off your destiny and calling. Stop saying that you don’t have time. God gave you the exact amount of time you need. Allow yourself to see that you are worth being a part of every purpose and plan God has for you RIGHT NOW. So write those books. Publish the ones you have already written. Move in those ministries. Stop being afraid of who you are and love yourself the way God does. You are beautiful and special. God says so. Stop waiting until tomorrow to accept that and be bold enough to be all that you are created to be. Tomorrow may not come.
You keep saying you don’t have time for yourself. That’s a lie. You have plenty of time to take care of yourself. Stop trying to have the perfect home. The laundry will always need to be folded and clean clothes are just as clean and wearable if they are in the basket as they are in the dresser. The floors will always get messy so stop fretting if there is a crumb under the table or dog hair by the back door. Instead of pushing yourself until you have nothing left trying to be an ideal of perfection God doesn’t expect, take moments, instead, to take care of YOURSELF. Take the shower…who cares if the baby is crying. She won’t cry herself to death. Put her in her walker in the bathroom with you and let her cry while you wash your hair. Take the nap. Your laundry will still be there when you wake up but the moments you have to rest will be gone if you do not seize them. Do the workouts. You may not be able to do them easily or perfectly but if you just keep trying, you will eventually be stronger than you ever thought possible. It’s okay to let the house go so you can take care of you. If you wither and buckle physically from the stress of your need for perfection, you cannot take care of the ones you love the most. So go ahead. Say no to some of the cleaning today and just spend time on yourself.
You keep saying, “I can’t”. Stop using those those words. They are lies. Trust me I know. I have been using them on repeat for years and you are so much more than I am. For every I can’t, there is an I CAN. God made you to be more than capable to do ANYTHING you put your mind to. You are smart. You are strong. Your are incredible. Stop believing you can’t do things and just do them. Prove every I can’t wrong. Someday you will not be able to do that so make it your mission to turn every single I can’t into an I DID before it’s too late.
Your life is precious. It means so much more than you give yourself credit for. Stop selling yourself short. Stop letting people speak harmful things into your life and stop living your life afraid of the things that have been spoken over you that you KNOW were not from the Lord. Stop caring what anyone else thinks. You know who you are and you know what you are created for so be confident and love yourself. Show yourself the same care and compassion you do others. Allow yourself to make mistakes and stop trying to be who you used to be. I like who you have become. You are braver, stronger, more fearless, and more amazing than I have ever been. You are my hero. So keep being YOU.
P.S. I think 40 is going to be your best year yet.
Younger You ❤