To my fourteen-year-old self

There is a strange appeal to the idea of writing a letter to a past self, although it is difficult to explain why. We love these ideas, even make books of these letters, but the rational side of me is thinking, ‘Why are we doing this? We didn’t read this as a fourteen-year-old; we would have noticed! It’s too late to do anything with the advice!’ Are we thinking it might help others of that age? Does it comfort the side of us that never really grew up?

With a previous similar Daily Prompt about meeting your younger self, I said I wouldn’t tell her anything. No spoilers! However, I’ve been lured in by the letter-writing, and the fact that fourteen was a great age, so what would I say?

letter

To my fourteen-year-old self,

Hi! I know this is weird, since it’s a letter from your supposed future self. There’s no reason you should believe that, although I do know that this is the year you’ve met the Pop Idol finalists on tour (and your 26-year-old self is still annoyed that Sam Nixon didn’t win), and you’re officially obsessed with that new band that’s burst on to the scene, McFly. In a time before Facebook (you’ll find out what this is soon enough), these facts could be difficult to guess, although you do have their flyer taped inside your locker.

In fact, I remember that fourteen was a great age, which might sound weird, as most people by now have difficulty distinguishing specific years from those around them. However, for me, being fourteen is wrapped up with McFly, the beginning of one of my major obsessions. I know it will be no spoiler to you to say that this love is going to LAST.

You’re at the age where you’ll beg for spoilers, but deep down you don’t really want them, so I’m going to keep this simple. I could tell you to trust your gut instincts, but I know you’ll not always do it. I could tell you ‘You’re not fat, OK?!’ but I know you won’t believe me. I could tell you to avoid x or y, but as I’ve lived it I know it’s going to happen!

I’m not going to say mistakes and mishaps are blessings in disguise, because I’m not sure I believe that myself yet. However, what I will say is this: everything you’re going to do leads me here, and for that I should really say thank you. (I guess you know you’re going to be OK.)

Don’t get me wrong – sometimes you will feel like crap, and that’s perfectly normal. (I’d argue it’s bordering on rational sometimes, given the state of the world.) Just recognise and appreciate when you’re lucky. Yes, you! You’ll probably scoff at that, but it’s like when people on Pop Idol say, ‘Things like this don’t happen to people like me!’ and you think, ‘Well, obviously they do!’ You’ll have opportunities too.

I guess a useful piece of advice would be an old Persian proverb you haven’t heard yet: ‘Go ahead and wake up your luck.’

Have fun!

Your 26-year-old self

*

She’s going to love it.

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6 thoughts on “To my fourteen-year-old self

  1. Juni Desireé says:

    I loved McFly!!! Wow, memories. Love this letter too. You have a great voice.
    I was wondering if I could include some of this post in a book I’ve put together called Fall in Love with Writing. It combines the words of over 170 people from around the world as they talk about writing. It’s to inspire people to write, and I’d love to include this in the letter writing section. Your name, age, and country can be included or you can be anonymous. All good if you’re not interested, but just thought I’d check.
    You can also check out this post for more info about the book: http://junidesiree.com/2015/08/26/the-journey-so-far-to-publish-fall-in-love-with-writing/

  2. bibliosa says:

    This is really great! It reminds me a letter I wrote to my future self at 18. It’s sitting in my dresser patiently waiting for me. I’m curious about what 18 year old me has to say to 28 year old me. Guess I’ll find out in 4 more years. I think I’ll try this too, it seems like it’ll be interesting to look back 🙂

  3. MissB says:

    I love it! McFly are awesome and I love knowing where the name of your blog has come from! This is a post thats on my to-do list of posts! I’d say it’s a toughie!
    Much love x

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