Just popping in to give some words of wisdom to my younger self.
Hello self. You’re 18 years old, and you just met this boy at a friend’s birthday party. His cousin set you two up for a slow dance at the party. Awkward. But he’s kind of cute. Looks like a bit of a badass. Trouble, more than likely. But those brown eyes you’re afraid to stare directly into, because you don’t want him seeing your soul… they have already sealed your fate.
Next month, you’re going to bump into him again. At the same friend’s boyfriend’s birthday party. He’s going to act like an idiot by shoving two balloons down his shirt and pulling a Sears pose. You will not dance with him that night… you’ll shake your head and wonder what made you feel attraction last time you saw him.
Then you’ll discover he lives in your survey… the end unit next to where the high school bus picks you up. And you will get butterflies in your tummy every time you walk by the place. You’re convinced you will bump into him along this walk to the bus stop, and even though it will never happen, you’re not prepared for it anyway.
You won’t see him again. You won’t put a lot of thought into it, and you certainly aren’t worried. You aren’t looking for a boyfriend… but you’ll find yourself with one anyway. A guy from high school, who is a little on the chunky side, but you’re attracted anyway and he reeks of cigarettes. You won’t smoke. But he has a car, and he takes you out. It will (rightfully so) make you nervous when his mom tells him, quite loudly, to keep his bedroom door open. It won’t be long before you discover what he’s all about, and it won’t be enough for you. You will want the WHOLE package. You will want a friend in addition to all of that. I’m so glad you have that wisdom back then.
Later on, in April, and his name will pop up again. What will it MEAN? Is it destiny? I mean, you’ve barely thought about him in three months. The “boyfriend” will then be an ex, he will have lost interest as soon as it becomes clear you’re not that kind of girl. You won’t be heartbroken, at all. Your friend will encourage a trip to the mall for the three of you, because you know, a girl needs backup! It will be a fun trip. There will be a lot of flirting, and those brown eyes… he definitely seems interested, but you’ll still want to test the waters. You’ll end the day by inviting him to your high school dance at the end of the month, which, ironically, will be the day you’ll go into labour with your first son, just seven years from now.
The evening of the dance, he will have wowed you already… he’ll give you a rose when he shows up at your house. Who does that anymore? He will meet your parents, and you will be on your way. You’ll find your friends, make all the introductions. He will suggest you could possibly get a buzz from smoking consecutive cigarettes, quickly. Maybe he will have forgotten you’re new at smoking, you only started the previous week. Oh honey… it’s embarrassing. I wish we could just wipe out that part of the night, but maybe it happens for a reason. You’ll pass out, in front of everyone, and end up at the hospital. Your friend will go with you, instead of him (he will never let you live this down, be forewarned), and you will have no concept of time… or location. Next thing you know, your dad will show up. He’ll definitely be worried, but he’ll be pretty quiet. He’ll make small talk, while nurses come and go to check things. And then you’ll spot him, in the doorway. He will be there. Out of concern. Out of thoughtfulness. Out of worry. In your disbelief, you’ll hold out your arms to him for a hug, and your dad will quietly leave the room. You can’t know this yet, but this boy is now not going anywhere.
This is just the beginning, and there is so much more to say. So much I wish I could warn you about. I wish I could tell you not to sweat the small stuff. You don’t know it at this point, because everyone is so nice to the “new girlfriend”, there will be some people who will never fully accept you. You could spend the rest of your life wishing things were different, but don’t. It won’t matter, because it will never happen.
You won’t need their acceptance anyway. Ever. You’ve become an amazing woman. You’re talented in so many ways, witty and smart… not to mention, you’re funny as hell to talk to. You always seem to have that one little comment that causes the crowd to laugh. You’re a terrific mother, no matter how many tears you’ll spill while telling yourself you’re a failure. Your mom skills will constantly be tested; just wait until your first son turns 15… honey, that won’t be easy, but you will manage beautifully, and he will be a better person based on your reaction. Your family has so much love surrounding it… and while it’s not always going to be peachy, at the end of the day, your kids will understand why you and your husband have done things the way you have.
Most of all, in the future, you’re a terrific wife. You would move mountains for your husband… and you try to, on a daily basis. You provide him with a warm, clean home, and good meals. You two are still crazy about each other in every way, even when you’ve been married for close to 20 years. You still miss each other’s presence when you’re at work, and you thoroughly love to be together. Good friends will remind you of what a great thing it is that you have together, while others would secretly love to see it torn apart. Ignore the latter. Don’t let anyone or anything bring you or your marriage down. You have a good thing, and best of all, you get to stare into those beautiful, brown eyes anytime you like. They know your soul, inside and out, and they still love you.
This post is dedicated to my amazing husband, Devin. I love our story and could tell it until the end of time. I love you so much and I’m thankful you are with me on this journey. ❤