I know we have all, at some time or another, thought about what we would say to our future self if we were given the chance. This has been on my mind a lot lately. I know that I cannot change my past any more than I can foresee my future, but what I do know is that I can take what I have learned and apply it to my future. So, if I were to write a letter to myself, today, with what I know now, this is what I'd say.
It's ok. No, really. It is quite ok not to have all of the answers. You weren't meant to. I know that there is going to be a day when you will search deep to find them and you are going to come up empty; really, really empty. Again, it's ok. Honestly there may not even be a place to find the answers. There are things in life that can't be found online or in a book. These are the things you may not even get the best advice from others for. It's ok. You have to be ok with not knowing. It will be hard, but you've been there before.
Listen, where you are right now isn't guaranteed to be the place you end up. The struggle you are in, the constant self doubt, the irrevocable knowledge that you have suffered a great heartache, these things, they don't define you. These are merely circumstances. Yes, dear, they do stink. They hold with them the power to reduce you to nothing. These are the things that, if you let them win, will change you. They will create in you a person that you aren't as you cling to anything, anyone who will help you forget. Don't. Simply don't.
You can do it. You can utter the word NO. You have the strength to be true to yourself and tell that person NO. Do not focus on them, this is about you. You know. YOU KNOW what you need to do. Do it! While in some way the want for a change, even if in its fleeting-ness looks great, deep down you know that some change is not worth the end result. Say NO. Then, say yes to yourself.
Mandy, really, find yourself. This isn't some new-age gypsy type thing. This is you discovering the woman God designed you to be. He did that you know. He designed you. You know what makes your heart hurt and you know what makes your heart smile. If you find yourself in a position where those two are fighting and what you stand for is the fulcrum...listen to the truth. God's truth. He designed you after all. Oh, and yes, you will stumble a time or two. Be ok with being ok with it.
No, this isn't an open invitation to do anything you want in the pursuit of yourself. This is you being confident in the woman you are to know what does and does not work. Don't chase after anything that is constantly pushing you away and for the love of all things holy, do not fall for what is chasing you when God is pushing that away. Yes, dear, you DO know what that looks like. Again, be ok with not having what you think it is you have to have.
I know there is so much more that I could say, and perhaps another note to myself will be in order, but what I know today is that I am not where God wants me to be. I am too broken to truly know what it is that I want. I know what I want in my irrational mind, but God has some sorting out of the details yet to do. I think it may be time to listen to myself.