Dear Fifteen Year Old Me,
You’re in a new phase of your life, you’re more open now, and you’ve made even more friends. I’m proud of you. But you’ve also embraced sadness as a way of life.
You think way too much, and read too much meaning in the smallest of things. You want so much out of life, and you think you know how to get it. Well, I’m sorry to say that you got it wrong. The future isn’t the answer to pain. Neither is the future the answer to a complete life.
Many years from now you would keep chasing the future, and it would elude you as your shadow in front of you. Please stop.
You’re curious about the big questions of life, and you have already idolized love. But here are my thoughts about these things:
It’s who you become that helps make life what you and others wish it could be. There is no such thing as a soul mate: your magical fix to your incompleteness. You will search for this person, and find, many years down the line, that your soul mate is really you-and not just you, the better version of you.
You will meet so many amazing people. You wouldn’t always understand them. Don’t pine for them. Don’t long for their approval. Admire them. Pray for them. Enjoy their company for however little you have it, and keep on your way.
Younger me, you will learn what falling in love means the hard way. It will not always be returned. It’s just how life is. You are not less because of it, rather you are better for it because you will learn to consider another above yourself, and you will learn to be patient. These are the greater virtues.
Don’t idolize love. And don’t idolize people. No one is perfect, not even perfect in their imperfections. Neither are you. There will be parts of you that need someone else’s patience and forbearance. And you will need to be patient and forbear with another’s flaws.
About that guy, you know who I’m talking about, seven years down the line, you’ll wonder what you ever saw in him. You’ll be glad it didn’t work out, but you’ll still pray for him (at least once).
I know how ambitious you are. It will come back to haunt you a few years down the line, this ambition of yours. You’ll learn the hard way that God is Sovereign, but you’ll also learn that His love for you is infinite and you can trust Him with your life. So jump!
Please stop. Stop looking to life to give you the best version of itself. Look to God, and have some faith in yourself too. Have faith that you’re enough. When you are complete in God, know, absolutely know, that this is only when you can see the good in life and in others. Nothing else can fill you, and nothing else would.
Finally, about your friends, they are great, but imperfect, and they will hurt you. Forgive them; love them; pray for them. Be their friends anyhow, not because of what they’ve done, but because of what He’s done.
You’re intelligent. God has blessed you so. You have a whole lot to learn. Keep learning as you are already, be curious and full of wonder, and have hope, not in things but in God and in His unfailing love.
With much love,
Me more than a decade after 🙂