Letters to my 16 year old self.



Now that we’ve got that sorted out, we need to have a little chat. There are going to be some things you do very right and some things you do very wrong. It’s going to get hard at times and a little bit scary. You’re going to lose your job when you’re 23 but it’s going to be the best thing that’s ever happened to you.

(And you’re going to crash your car a few times. Just FYI)

You’re going to cycle through a lot of friends. Some friends treat you pretty terribly. You’re also going to treat some of your friends pretty terribly. Apologize to them. Strive for reconciliation. Because sometimes you make it about you and it really isn’t. Some of your best friends are going to walk away from you. Don’t chase after them. Let them go because there are far better people ahead. You’re also going to drift away from others. You’ll both want it to work but it won’t so just let it drift. It’s much less painful when you both acknowledge it isn’t working.

Don’t worry, you graduate from high school and get into the college of your dreams. You have a blast. And yes, you pass Strategic Management. And Accounting 1 & 2. And Finance. I hate to tell you this, but maybe you should think about a different major. You’re a little bit awful at details. But you figure this out in your mid-twenties. You learn about your creative side and how to embrace it.

Your family becomes the world to you. But it gets really dark for awhile. It gets dark and hard and painful. You’re really angry and scared. You feel caught between being a kid and being an adult. You grow up and hurt them. They hurt you too. Then one day comes and redemption happens. Words aren’t erased but they start to fade and new ones take their place. You begin to trust them with all of who you are.

You get to do all the things you always wanted to do in the music industry. It may not be particularly impressive to anyone else but you cross all the things off your list. The stories you’ll have are crazy. It’s a short lived ride but you meet some of the best people and it sends you to the best and worst time in your life.

Baby girl, you move back to Colorado. Not only that but you move in with mom and dad. Twice.

I know, I know, you’re covering your eyes, groaning and swearing you never will. But it’s literally the best thing in the world that could happen to you. Because you find out who you are. You find out the beautiful mysterious things that make your heart come alive and you meet people who push you to do those things. These people? They are the rarest of the rare. They have seen your heart, your mess, your broken, your ugly, and they love you desperately in the middle and in spite of it all.

You enter into a season of knowing how deeply loved you are by Papa and the community He places around you. You get your heart wrecked by this love. In fact, I know you say your favorite color is blue, but it’s actually something else. I don’t want to spoil it for you, but let’s just say you have to go to a hotel room in Denver, all by yourself to figure that out.

The part you’re really wondering about? Boys? I guess we can get to that now.

Yes – you get your first kiss. I’m not going into more details than that because you just need to experience it on it’s own. You start to get more comfortable in your skin. You’re going to say some super awkward things but they make for great stories. Your heart will get destroyed twice after you move back to Colorado. Once soon after you move back and once not long before I wrote you this letter.

It sucks. You cry alot. You get angry and throw a few things. You lay on the floor in a puddle of tears. Your best friend brings you Gatorade one Friday night because you’ve been crying so hard and you’re so sad you haven’t been eating. Then she strokes your hair for two hours as you lay your head in her lap. She doesn’t say a word. She just sits there.

Don’t worry though. You do meet some nice boys and go on some fun dates. You like a couple of them and some of them like you. You haven’t quite figured it out but you do okay. Most of all, you end up comfortable in your own skin. You actually learn to like yourself.

Oh and it doesn’t hurt that one of the most popular guys from your high school hits on you . So you’ve got that going for you.

But sweet love, it’s going to be hard. So hard that at times you can’t breathe. Believe me when I say, it is so worth it. And Papa is always good to you. Better than you deserve. Because like I said, you get it wrong way more than you get it right. The only thing you do really well is running to Papa in desperation. Don’t lose that, love. Don’t lose that for a second.

I’ll see you in another ten years.


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