You're 16, You're Beautiful, AND . . .

Welcome to ChicagoNow’s Blogapalooz-Hour! You know the drill.
Your challenge, if you choose to accept it, is to publish a post in one hour. Here is tonight’s challenge:
What are three pieces of advice you would give to your 16 year old self?

I had to chuckle a bit when I read this topic. What 16-year-old would listen to anything an adult, especially an ancient one, tells them?

Then to add insult to injury, it’s ME telling ME what to do? Oh, the humanity!

I remember being 16, kinda, and it wasn’t a cake walk. Teen age years can be so traumatic and difficult. Our lives hung in the balance of, well, nothing. You can’t hurt indestructible. I shudder at thinking about trying to explain anything to a younger version of myself.

Personally, I don’t think you can make people listen to you unless they want to.

So, what is that sage bit of advice that one can give a fledgling to make sure they don’t ruin their life?

Well, that’s an answer for another day, a very long one, and I will not digress here – time is ticking.

So, basically –

QUESTION: What can I do to get through to a head strung 16 year old me?

ANSWER: Nothing, nada, not a damn thing.

See, those years were a process in getting to these years. The days and years in between were filled with a lot of things. So many bad things, but wait, there were so very many good things too. I have a wonderful life and wouldn’t want to change it. So,

Would changing the path of a 16-year-old end me up on the same place?

Here is where the million-dollar question lies. Do we correct the sins of the past and risk being given a different outcome? Or do we correct the mistakes, bad choices, and rash decisions that led me to where I am today?

After giving it a few minutes thought (we are, after all, on an hour time thing-y) I would prefer this option.

I sit here typing and will begin by telling myself this. The self that is now present and listening (well, as well as I can – gotta write, you know).

Hey, current self:

You did ok. You made it through the rough times and shitty times and you came out the other side. No matter how bad things were or how hopeless they looked, you did ok. You have survived heartbreaks, loss, illness and depression. Not saying they won’t be back, but you have weathered storms, remember that.

You didn’t always have to do it alone. You reached out for help now and then. Sometimes help arrived and other times it didn’t. Remember that The Big Guy has always had your back.

There were times you screwed up, royally. But, the lessons learned from those times were invaluable, they provide the chance for growth, inner peace and acceptance. (Yea, still a work in progress)

So, why ruin the fun? And why ruin the surprise?

Kiddo, you got this!

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