Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Dear me,

Wow, you're 16 already? I bet you think you're invincible, don't you? Wait, I already know you think you're invincible.

Because I'm you. Just 20 years later. Today is my 36th birthday. I'm relatively spry for being such a senior citizen, but before the senility sets in I'm going to write you a letter. I mean, write me a letter. You as in me. Agh, now I'm confused.

Anyway, that's right, I'm totally stealing a Brad Paisley song and turning it into a blog post.

Huh? What's a blog post? FREAKING AWESOME, that's what. Just wait.

Allow me to give you some advice, if that's alright. No, please don't roll your eyes. Yes, I know you're only rolling them on the inside, but I am wise to your sneaky ways. I'm you, remember?

Let's just get this out of the way first thing - that virginity of yours? It's precious. Don't give it away, no matter how much you love him right now. No, I'm not negating that love because I do know it's real, deep, true and overwhelming love, but trust me when I say you need to hang onto the virginity. It's really humbling to tell your 12 year old about the birds and the bees and have to admit you weren't a virgin when you got married and you'd like for her to not make the same mistakes you did.

Stop starving yourself. It's ridiculous and you're not healthy. It's only going to lead to problems later.

Your mom is incredibly wise. When it comes to moms you already know you've got the best, but in true teenager fashion you still think she's old-fashioned and silly sometimes. Yep, she is. Someday she's going to marry a preacher and become even more old-fashioned. You should absorb some of that. It's not a bad thing.

No, your parents are not going to stay married forever. Yes, I'm serious. Just go easy on your momma, okay? She's going to take it hard and she's going to be fragile for awhile. She'll be fine in the end (see above: marrying a preacher) but it's going to be rough on her for a long time. She's going to be bitter. A little tolerance goes a long way.

Thankfully you've already figured out that your little sister is not an evil alien put on this earth just to annoying the living fire out of you. Thankfully you already cherish her friendship. She, too, will get a divorce someday. She's going to need you. She's incredibly tough, but you've got to make sure you're there to offer a shoulder to cry on. She will eventually become your best friend in the entire world. Be a good big sister.

Oh, and when you're pregnant with your first child and you feel this overwhelming urge to back that little sister to the wall and yell at her nose-to-nose? I think I should warn you that you will come perilously close to getting punched. You might want to chill out. The baby inside you will be all that protects you from getting a knuckle sandwich.

Getting pregnant isn't going to be easy. Don't believe the doctor that tells you you will never be a mother. Don't believe the other doctor that tells you your first will be your only. In fact, if you'd like to laugh at them that'd be okay by me. Trust me - you are going to make them both liars. Three times over. Yeah. Pick your chin up off the floor, honey.

If you don't breastfeed you'll still be a good mom. Your kids will be fine.

Floss. Please.

You are going to someday be close friends with an upperclassman who used to throw pennies at you on the schoolbus and tease you mercilessly. Yes, really. She will become invaluable to you when you're a young mother and she's going to tell you that sex really does get better when your last kid is out of diapers and the stress level goes down. Believe her. Hang in there.

On that same note, the girls you are running around with will have no contact with whatsoever by the time 20 years roll around. One will even meet you head-on in the mall while you're doing your Christmas shopping and pretend you don't exist. Just don't put all your eggs in one whole basket of "friends." The girls you were so close to in elementary school will be there for you when you're adults. You might not talk to each other every day and you might not even see each other that often, but they are true friends. These three you're running around with now? They aren't.

The internet is awesome. Oh, and learn to use a computer before you're 23.

While Dr. Brazelton is a guru in the field of child-rearing, please don't think that his opinions and research trumps your maternal instinct.

You will NOT die when Brad breaks up with you. I know you think you will, but I swear you won't. I'm living proof. Russell is a jerk and not worth stealing from your little sister. By the way, shame on you for stealing a guy from your little sister.

When that credit card application comes in the mail when you're somewhere around the tender age of 21 BURN IT.

There are going to be two men in your adult life that will frustrate the heck out of you. One is your father, the other is your husband. You can't change either of them. Don't try. They love you the best way they know how. Yes, you like to dictate how the world revolves around you, but with these two you are outmatched. You'll be happier when you just love them back the best way you know how and leave it at that.

Years 7 through 14 of your marriage are going to suck. And hard. You will want to give up and call it quits and run away. More than once. I'm here to tell you that you are strong and it's totally worth it. He's an amazing man.

Spend more time with Papa and Memaw. Even though you don't think you will get a durn thing out of spending time with an old farmer, you are going to miss him something fierce when he's gone. And while your Memaw is sick and won't know who you are sometimes you need to just be there. There will come times in your life you wish you could go back and just sit there next to her.

God will never leave you. When you feel far from Him it's because you moved. Stay close. It makes all the difference in the world.

You are going to have some post-partum depression after the birth of your third child. Get some help. Or some medication. Better yet, get both.

Exercise is not the enemy. Your fat hind-end is will be, though. Just remember that.

I really should go now. There still need to be some secrets and surprises. You turn out to be awesome, though. Trust me on this one.

Happy 16th birthday, Kristin.




Robin said...

Happy 16th!! wink wink

Anonymous said...

16.....21.....25....36 would ya make up yer ever luvin mind? Lol, must be the first sign of old age.

The whole grade school friend thing is so amazingly true that I keep telling it to Natalie on a daily basis and she's still in grade school!!!!

Debbie said...

Happy Happy Birthday!!! I looooove this post!! I'll seriously consider stealing this idea when my birthday gets here! :)

Okie Rednecks said...

happy birthday again!!!!

Anonymous said...

Beautiful post! I did a similar letter to 18 year old me a few months ago, and yours reminds me of mine in tone, even if the specifics are different. Nicely done, and happy birthday!

I popped over from the Okie Blog awards to have a peek and congratulate you on your nomination. I look forward to more good reading over here.

Mrs. C said...

Wow. I was almost in tears when I finished. An awesome post! And I love the song by Brad. My 40th is coming up soon, think I may borrow the idea...

Shannon said...

Great post Kristin! It reminded me of Back to the Future.
Happy Birthday once again!!!!

Jill of All Trades said...

Happy Birthday a couple of days late.

Jennifer Chronicles ( said...

Wow, I had to choke back my tears when I got to the little sister part. "She, too, will get a divorce someday." Man. As I've been making the rounds of Okie Blogs for the contest, I'm really impressed with all the talent out there in Oklahoma. I mostly connect with bloggers in other states and nations, so this has been so cool. And, I'm sure you've heard it a kazillion times, but I love your masthead.

Emily said...

That was incredible. I wish I knew what I'd write to myself in 20 more years. That'd help.

Unknown said...

Happy Birthday!

Great letter - I was bawling at the Papa and Memaw part. There's so much I could tell my young self in that department. And the having kids part - been there, done that and have the two miracles to prove it! Breastfeeding - thank you! I exclusively bottle fed my second and he is the healthiest of the two!

Happy 16th, 36th, or whatever, with many mor eto come!!!

Sara said...

I just found your blog from the Okie Awards- love it! This post was fabulous and inspired me to write one as well. So glad I found your blog! Hilarious!

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