Sometimes I think back to the me at 17 and am in awe of how different I have become. For me, that was the age I first felt love. At times, I look back at the goals that 17-year-old kid had and realize how different I am today. I have so much I wish I could say to that kid, so many lessons, but allowing you all to read must do.
As you read this letter, you’re so young, so naïve, so innocent and unsuspecting of the world you will come to know. I envy you, I envy that unenlightened bliss that you have now. As you read this you’re probably sitting in the pick-up truck of the cute freckled face boy with strawberry blonde hair that you’re convinced you will spend your life with. His boyish smile can still melt your heart and fix any mood. You’re so unsuspecting of the light that the boy you feel is the hero of your heart is going to take from you. You’re naïve of the hearts that you’re going to break in the wake of your hurt following him. You’re so inexperienced in karma and all the failed relationships you’re going to have.
Gabriel, as bleak as that sounds, I want you to know that things will get better. Maintain the positivity you carry through every day. Know that no matter the obstacle you will overcome it. Know your worth and refuse to compromise it for anyone, regardless of how much it breaks your heart at time. You see Gabriel, I know you won’t read these words… but the man I am today often needs to hear these things. The man I am today needs to look back at times and see just how far I’ve come and remind myself of where I am going. Gabriel, for every time our heart has broken (and for every heart we have broken- trust me, you’re going to break a few), it’s part of our path. Gabriel I have faith that me in the future is reading this letter so happy I wrote and told you not to give up, because in the therapy of writing this, I’m propelling myself forward through tomorrow. Sometimes we have to keep it together even when we’re falling apart, and Gabriel that’s okay.
If only I could write a letter to me at 17…