My sister set a New Year’s resolution to try to live her life as if she were 20 years older and suddenly had the chance to go back and do it all again. I have been thinking about that. I know so much more now. I would do things differently. Fifteen years ago I was 30. If I could go back and visit myself, we would sit on that old green couch that got the afternoon sun while the kids napped, and this is what I would tell myself:
- Quit worrying about what people will think. They aren’t thinking about you.
- Buying things won’t make you happy. Doing things will. Instead of buying stuff – do stuff.
- Impressive cars and fancy houses don’t make you impressive or fancy. And they won’t make people like you (see #1)
- Invite people over more. Quit worrying about if they like you (they do) or if your house is clean enough (they don’t care – see #1).
- Pray more. Pray about EVERYTHING. Like: Should we buy a car? Should I home school? How can I help my child? What can I do for my husband? Please help me to stop freaking out!
- Back WAY off the sugar. You’ll feel better. And, while you’re at it, enjoy how darling and skinny you are right now. Start appreciating how beautiful you are – you are much too hard on yourself.
Then after I gave all that advice I would tell myself just how great I was. I would point out all the things I was doing right. Then we, my 30 year old self and I, would wake the kids up from their naps and cuddle while we read books, then we would go play in the garden – pushing the kids on the swings and admiring their daring trampoline tricks.
I wouldn’t be able to stay long. I am needed here in my 44-year-old life. I would probably cry when it was time to go because I miss that time when my kids were all mine and hadn’t found the world yet.
I would hug my 30-year-old self and tell her I love her. I really do love her. And then I would tell her one last thing:
You are better than you think you are.
Robin and her tall charming husband have 4 kids: child #1 is in college, child #2 should be in college (grumble), child #3 applying to college, and child #4 in 6th grade. It’s time for her to start her Ph.D. but she’d rather open a garden center and go to cooking school. She experiences a ridiculous amount of joy when her kids brag about her cooking. She blogs at http://robinblogz.blogspot.com/.