Dear 22-year old Caroline..
Oh, there are so many things I want to say to you.. Where do I even begin?
Let me just start off by saying; stop being so hard on yourself. Please stop beating yourself up each and every single day and demand perfection from yourself in everything you set out to do in life. Everything isn’t perfect and that is okay. You can only do your very best, and so you do.. But still, you don’t see that.
I wish you hadn’t spent the majority of your childhood and teenage years rushing to become an adult so that you could be taken seriously.. The ones who cared for you already knew you were meant to do great things in this world that was at your feet – with no rush or pressure to become anything or anyone. You were already being taken seriously back then..
Still, you felt the need to get a head-start on life so that you could move away from your pain.
I wish you knew then, that, adult or non-adult, emotional baggage perseveres until we decide to face our fears. I wish you knew, that growing up didn’t mean releasing your pain. That way, maybe you at least could’ve played with dolls, played handball and drawn in your colouring books for just a little while longer..
I wish you knew that mum & dad’s divorce was never just black and white. They never split because of you. Oh, Caroline – they love you so much, and I wish you could’ve seen that. They still do. And they are so proud of you.. You and Christine are their absolute everything.
I know you feel like they abandoned you and never loved you the way you wanted them to.. But they did. They did it in their way. And they did their very best. Just as they were brought up and taught how to, so they were passing on their past learnings and patterns to you. You cannot judge. I promise you will see it differently when you get to know yourself as an adult.
I know there are many things you want to do differently when you have kids one day, but remember that their pure love was always the foundation for the being you are today.. And trust me; you’ll be a good human.
Caroline, sweet girl.. I wish you didn’t obsesses over your looks and weight from such a young age. It kills me that you could never see how beautiful you were and still are.. From the inside-out. I wish you would’ve known that beauty isn’t measured in kilograms, make-up or how zit-free your skin is.. It is not in what clothes you wear, the colour of your hair or the size of your jeans. Beauty is the depth of your soul, the kindness of your heart, the compassion of your true being and the willingness to give without never expecting to receive.. Why can’t you see that? It hurts me to see you like this; sticks and bones. Your sister can’t even recognise you any longer. When you bend over you’re a shell of a human. All for what? Acceptance? No one is accepting you, my dear.. Not even yourself.
I wish you never doubted your worth.. And I wish you, a long time ago, would’ve honoured yourself the way you choose to do today. I know, if you loved yourself back then, you would’ve known that being in a relationship where you get punched in the face and have to cover your bruises from your parents and sister is not a sign of ‘love’ or affection.. Love isn’t being told that you’re not good enough or that you need to change. Do you see now? Love is being who you truly are. Honouring yourself, respecting yourself, standing up for yourself.
You are love. You always have been and always will be. That has and never will change.
I wish you would’ve known that it’s okay to not be okay.. That days are dark and the world can be harsh. I wish you never would’ve judged yourself solemnly based on your worst days, but looked to the sunny skies you always created for yourself. I wish you knew that it’s okay to cry and be soft.. And I wish you didn’t build the walls around your heart that will take you more than a decade to let go of.
Dearest 22-year old Caroline.. I wish I could’ve held and cradled you when you needed it. I wish I could’ve wiped away the tears when your heart was so heavy. I wish I could tell you that what you believe to be your world, in fact, doesn’t matter at all. I wish I could show you the amazing, loving, caring, intuitive, powerful and enlightened woman you are becoming so slowly. But most of all, I wish I could shelter you from the years that you are about to face.. These years will shape your entire existence and it will require you to fight for life. I know you don’t know, but your perseverance and the light you have started to acknowledge inside of you will guide you to the life you are meant to live..
Just trust, have faith, surrender and let go, so that you can finally live your truth. I promise you it’s worth the suffering and pain.. I can’t help but smile, because I know how you’ll be doing cartwheels from joy and happiness in a few years time..
I love you, always..
With love, your 27-year old Caroline..