Letter to My Younger (and slightly foolish) Self

Blogging scares me. I am writing from my soul, my heart, from memories…and I feel vunerable. People will judge me based on what I write, based on what I believe. And that scares me. But, I started a blog to share my feelings and hopefully to learn a little something about myself along the way.

I read a book entitled “What I Know Now: Letters to My Younger Self” by Ellyn Spragins and several famous women write letters to the women/girls they once were. It inspired me to reach down and share advice I wish I had when I was 18. I have no regrets but, its a letter of appreciation of who I am today.

I can see you sitting there with the biggest grin. I can see you smiling, just ending your phone call with your boyfriend, Erskine, sitting on the top bunk of the bunk beds you share with your roommate, Natalie. You have a boyfriend, you are in your first year of college….you’re on top of the world right? You can hear your rowdy hall mates and best friends (Tiziana, Ramona, and Melissa) laughing and screaming down the hall waiting for you to emerge from your love trance and join them so they can finally get to Peabody to dance the night away. These women are your rock during your college years. You need them as much as they need you. These ladies play very important and very different roles in your life…After graduation; you lose contact with Tiziana because she and Ramona had a disagreement. From this situation, you will learn that women can be very petty. Remember this….this won’t be the last time you experience it but you will grow from it. You move to Woodbridge with Ramona and later she has your goddaughter, Mia. You will eventually lose contact with Ramona. This is because when she gets a boyfriend, she disappears. From this situation, you learn that great friends are hard to find. Melissa will remain in your life for a very long time. Ever since you met her in 1992, you 2 have been like sisters. Keep her around…she’s a very positive person in your life. She’s a rare find.

Ahhh… Erskine….your 1st love…nothing but unconditional love. Your relationship will survive tragedies, arguments, and a very long distance (all the way to Iraq). You cry together, laugh together, travel together. Here’s the bad news: You will not marry this man. This man will give you an ultimatum that will destroy your relationship but, will strengthen you as a female. Stand your ground girl! Letting him go was the most liberating thing you could have ever done. You will make the decision to walk away…from this point, walking away from anyone who doesn’t give you what you need gets easier.

I know at times you may feel like death surrounds you…it hits too close to home.  You you’re your baby sister, baby brother, Grandma, and Pop Pop. Unfortunately, you will experience it again as time goes on. “Never forget me” are the last words your Uncle says to you as he lies in a hospital bed dying from cancer. Those 3 words will stick with you for the rest of your life. You see the fear in his eyes…it will scare you too.  This experience will shake you…it takes you a while to begin the mourning process. This experience will also open your eyes to a new life. A life where you will want to take risks and live every day like it’s your last day on this earth. Since your future is unknown, you will want to make the present unforgettable and precious.

Chantelle, you will get a few tattoos-go to grad school-live independently-laugh until you cry many times-become a professional bartender-travel the world-put a smile on everyone’s face-and dance dance dance! You will enjoy this time.  Stop planning and roll the dice! The husband, the babies, the big house will come…when you are ready. You have plenty of time to take on the new roles of Wife and Mommy.  So….go crazy! Skydive! Ski! Fall in love! Break hearts! Change someone’s life! Drink tequila! See the Eiffel Tower! This life is too short to be calculated and stiff! These are the days of your life. Make them count Rockstar!

Live, laugh and love!

You are my sunshine,

Chantelle Victoria