11 years ago I was 23. I was 23, married, and pregnant with super swollen feet and pretty confident in what we were about to get ourselves into. I was an aunt. A great aunt! I had this. WE had this.
There is so much I want to tell her. Her, than confident young woman about to become a mom.
I know there are a ton of blogs on this. I read one not too long ago that I loved, shared on facebook and wish I had written it myself. I am not copying her. Well I am copying her. Her and about 80 others that I pulled up on google search trying to find the one I am talking about so I could link it. But I cannot find it. It’s not an original idea to want to talk to your old self. I just loved that blog post so much it inspired me and made me want to tell myself a thing or two about the adventure she, her, me was about to encounter.
1. Just because you were in magazines and people paid you to be “pretty” doesn’t mean your daughter will do that same thing. I know you named her something that was unique and special because you just knew you would see her name in lights. But she will come to you perfect, in a way that you have never seen perfection. Her name will be known by many, but never for reasons you could imagine.
2. You will want to refresh on those chemistry and biology books you paid no attention to. In fact, you may want to do a whole refresher on school because you are headed down a road that you will need to know things you never thought you would ever need to know.
3. You will experience a heart break like you have never experienced. Your daughter will be the one who does this to you. It’s OK. You will love her deeper for it.
4. You will get a letter from new found friends called Welcome to Holland. And you will love it. Reminds you how much you didn’t enjoy your trip to Italy when you were 18 and also reminds you how much you want to visit your family in Holland.
5. You will cry like you never did before. You will hide those tears for a long time, but eventually you will learn that tears are not weakness. I would love to encourage you to embrace them sooner. The sooner you are able to express yourself to others the sooner the load you carry will get lighter.
6. Your habitual writing in your diary will become a lot more public. You learn that rawness is the only way you can share your journey and because of that you meet others, and even maybe help others while helping yourself.
7. You will loose all your faith in God and gain it back in a way you never knew him before.
8. You will have your heart broken again. And again.
9. You will always be OK though. Each time you will build up back stronger. Maybe a little tougher than before and maybe a little guarded, but it is your only way you know how to build back up.
10. You will be so proud of the little things you think your heart will burst and you will never take any skill your other kids do for granted.
11. Your wardrobe slowly starts to become less and less important. You find the faces you make causes a huge wrinkle in your forehead and your laugh causes your eyes to have crinkles. You never imagined this happening to you. You are too busy to do much about it and rely on nature to hold you up, but you will look in the mirror at times and wonder where she went.
12. You will end up a mother to 3.
13. You will end up being so busy you crave a moment to just sit on the couch and watch TV. Yes that goes away. That becomes a luxury.
14. You will be challenged by the strengths of your other daughter you never imagined being yours. She will bring light back into your dark world and also cause you frustrations you have never known.
15. You will try things you never imagined trying for your special girl. The one who broke your heart. You will try to cure her a million different ways all to no avail.
16. You will experience a son and all the rough and tumble things that come along with that. You will also experience a bond with him no one could shake.
17. You will become more simple.
18. You will become a woman of faith.
19. You will inspire others.
20. You will go through things in your marriage you won’t think you will survive. But you will. And you will be better for it.
21. You will think you are constantly making mistakes in regards to your kids. Sometimes you are. Sometimes you aren’t. You will do your best and feel pretty proud most of the time.
22. You will never think you are good enough, or smart enough. But you will continue to work on that.
23. You will make friends you can’t imagine never knowing. You only meet them though because you have a common bond you never wanted to have.
24. You will start to like yourself. Your insides far more than your outside.
25. You will have many pets. Teaching death to your middle child will break your heart again.
26. You will laugh. A lot. You will learn that laughing is way better than crying and sometimes things you find funny may or may not be totally inappropriate.
27. You will be glad that the cute guy you met that the bar, that you married on a whim ended up being the best person you will ever know. He will make you laugh. He will get you through some really rough times. His positivism will be a little annoying at times, but you will appreciate him bringing something you can’t.
28. You will get tired. To a point of complete exhaustion. But you always get up and do what needs to be done. I know how you like to be lazy, and you may eventually get to be that again, but it is good to know you can do what needs to be done when it needs to be done.
29. You will see more small caskets and attend way too many funerals and you will learn quickly you are in a world you never wanted to be in, and it can really suck.
30. You will know IEP’s and EEG’s, MRI’s, and PetScans, you will know all about sleep studies, and EKG’s, brain surgery and epilepsy. Medications and procedures. Diets and herbs. Minerals and oils. Dr’s, specialists, therapists, and even chiropractors. You become an expert in things you never had the patience to even read about and learn that you have to be an advocate for someone you love because no one else will do it like you will.
31. You give your time to a disorder that changed your existence. You wonder who you would have been if this disorder never happened and you are scared of the answer.
32. I’m not saying you are self involved and worry about petty things… but well you are and you do. But the wonderful thing is you learn, you evolve and you grow!
33. Your modeling past will be that, your past. You will have no connection to that world within months of knowing your baby isn’t like other babies. But you are definitely OK with that.
34. You are OK with everything, because you are strong. You survive so much because you have to.
35. The last thing I want to tell you is don’t be afraid of that baby girl that will soon be in your arms. Yes she will break your heart. Yes she will take your life in a direction you never imagined, but don’t be afraid of her. Hold her tight, sing her songs, dress her super cute and love her through each and every seizure she has, and there will be a lot, each day. She is going to rock your world and you need to always love her fiercely with all of you. You will be the best you can be because you get to be her mom.
It will be interesting to see what my 45 year old self needs to tell this 34 year old.