Saturday, November 24, 2018

Writing Prompt Saturday ~ Dear Younger Me...

Welcome to our Saturday post.

As promised, this is an extension of the post I made on Thursday about creating a note to my younger self for a publication. Because I only had 500 words to work with, I needed to be very direct and selective of what I wrote. And there would have been so much more I would have said.

Writing on this subject can be both a release as well as very difficult.

On the release side of things, it's a way for us to mentally sit face-to-face with that person who we have forgotten about. That little voice buried deep inside of us that is still innocent, naive, unscathed, unbroken, unbiased, not jaded, still hopeful and full of dreams that are to come. This is how I truly believe we come into the world. We aren't born angry, resentful and hateful. We fall into that line of thinking based on our early experiences, how we've been taught to deal with the hurdles we face, the decisions and choices we make and, most importantly, who we choose to surround ourselves with. Many of us won't fall too far down because we'll turn to that one glimmer of light that keeps us moving forward. Some of us either ignore that light or can't see it, preventing us from being where and who we're supposed to be. In this case, then, the release is sitting down with that little voice, our younger self, and being brave enough to share what we know now that we didn't know then. Almost like an apology. We're asking for forgiveness or telling that younger self to 'let go' so they don't become jaded, resentful and angry. We're showing them what will happen.

But...

It's also very difficult to write to a younger us. For those of us who had less than a happy childhood, the goal would be more to counsel that younger us to steer them away from certain decisions that have led us to the place we are in this moment. Think about that for a moment. If we had a Tardis and could actually time travel, would it really help to steer our younger us away from every crappy, painful, low, pivitol experience we've endured? Maybe in some ways. But preventing our younger self from experiencing certain events, no matter how painful, would steer them in a totally different direction than they were meant to go. Then certain events (or people) would also be effected by changing that one event to how we think it should have been. That's pretty powerful, when you think about it.

Bearing all of that in mind, that's why I chose to write to my younger self the way I did. I didn't apologize or try to 'save' her. I didn't even warn her to hold on to or let go of things she should have. All I did was look at her, knowing everything she was going to face, and gave her pearls of wisdom to keep in mind while she went down her path. These are things I knew back then but either chose to ignore them, or shut them out completely because my heart hardened as my body grew. Now, I take those experiences and do what's in my power to make a difference for someone else.

That's life coming full circle.

What would you say to your younger self? What would you leave him or her to hold on to? What glimmer of hope would you give him or her to believe in when times are tough? How would you guide him or her without actually changing anything?

My little voice is still with me. I talk to her now and then. But she guides me now, reminding me what's good in me.

And no one can take that away from either of us.

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