Dear Thirteen-Year-Old Me,

I'm dividing this letter into different parts, so that neither of us would get muddled up. 

About Your Physical Appearance: 

I know what you're going through.

You are terribly upset about the fact that you're not as tall as kids your age. Your friends are taller than you, your cousins - who are close to your age! - are taller and healthier than you. You feel really diminutive in front of everyone. You get really sad when people exclaim, "You are in eighth grade! I thought you were about nine years old!" 

Especially that lady living nearby your house, who's about as tall as a ten-year-old kid and as round as a football. 

It's completely fine. I assure you, you're going to grow as as tall as Mom. And all those people are going to be shorter than you! They'll be the ones who'll marvel at your height. 

You are really scared about "growing up". You're scared that you won't be able to play with the kids downstairs anymore. You feel that you'll not be a part of their lives anymore. 

They love you a lot, you know. They'll always invite you to their birthday parties and Christmas. They'll always say "hi" whenever you're in the lift with them. 

Let me tell you not to be worried about coquelicot because it's not going to be as scary as girls around you say it is. It's really normal and it won't hurt you in the least. It might make you a bit cranky, yes, but you'll be better off than your classmates in that aspect! 

You may not look that great now - due to your braces - but a year later, you'll have a major transformation! I'm not saying that you'll transform into a new Deepika Padukone or Britney Spears. You'll be a better person and a better judge of character - which is a thousand times more important than looking like an angel.

~~~~~ 

About Your Peers: 

You don't like that dark-as-coal guy because he calls you names such as, "Monkey", "Chimpanzee", etc. etc. He calls you a lot of names, posts a lot of mean comments on your Facebook pictures and tries to pull you down in every way imaginable. 

Of course, he's reminding you of your heritage. After all, humans are - very distantly - connected to apes! Moreover, chimpanzees are really smart - some of them are very cute, too! 

You often get worried about that girl in your class, the one who often criticizes you. Yes, that very same girl, who constantly tried to remind you that you're worthless and not as cool as her. 

She's a stuck-up snob, you know. People who act like they are adults are the ones who are about as mature as a three-year-old toddler. 

It's just a matter of time. Afterwards, both of you will go on different paths. You'll never see each other again, except maybe at a reunion in the distant future! 

I know how sad you were when you had a falling out with your friends. I remember how you had cried in the bathroom stall, how you were forced to stop when your classmates had started inquiring about your tears. I remember how your friends had accused you of doing something which you had not even done and the indignation that you felt within yourself. I remember how almost everyone - even one of your closest friends - had abandoned you just because of a petty misunderstanding. 

For an entire month, your friends refused to talk to you. Then, they finally did "forgive" you, even though, in reality, it was their fault for not clarifying things. 

The point is, they won't be your friends in the future - just mere acquaintances. 

Whatever it was, you guys solved it. You forgave each other. But, darling thirteen-year-old self, don't forget about this incident. Never. 

You are upset that two of your closest friends had changed schools - but do not worry. You are going to be in touch with them - constantly.

~~~~~

About Your Family: 

My dear thirteen-year-old self, you're the luckiest girl in the world. 

The person who loves you the most is Mom. She's the most beautiful mother out there. Even if you kill someone, she'll somehow try to make the victim the culprit. Make her proud, because she's one of those few people who deserves all the happiness out there. 

Your dad's brilliant. Ensure that you do talk to him, so that you can know a lot about everything. 

Your grandparents are the sweetest in this world. Your grandfather may admonish you. Both of you might fight for the remote, but he'll be there for you during a time when you're all alone.

Your grandmother may yell at you for not doing your chores. But she's an angel. She's really honest and simple. She'll make you laugh with her funny pronunciations of the word, 'towel' and she'll go on about her life in her village - where she was a demure girl, who would hide behind the door and play with the threads of her skirt!  

Your uncle and aunt are seriously some of the most amazing people on this earth. Be thankful to God that you got them. 

Your little cousin may be a pest, but she's got a heart of gold. And the new baby who will be born three years later? She's a cutie. Make sure you try to set a good example for them. 

Make them all proud, tiger.

~~~~~

Miscellaneous Advice:

You're going to befriend some of the most unpredictable people out there. 

 There might be some friends, who won't be your friends in the long run. Do not be disheartened by that. What I'm trying to say is, there are times when friends just drift apart. You don't have any common topics to converse on and there's nothing to give as such. Their existence isn't as tied to yours as you thought it was. The gaps become wider until they become valleys as deep as the Grand Canyon.

Write. Pursue your passion relentlessly. Don't be disheartened when people, especially your own family and friends, don't read your stuff. They love you, but since they're busy, they can't read those stories you wrote and the poems you composed...

Don't give a damn when people make fun of you for being a reader. Reading increases your vocabulary, it makes you a smarter person and someone who people love to talk to.

People think you're a nerd? You know what that means? They find it unsettling that you're trying to learn. Plus, some of the most successful people out there are nerds.

But do work hard. Don't let procrastination bring out the worst. Try hard to combat it.

Have fun in your life. No, I'm not telling you to do drugs and all. You play pranks with your friends, participate in plays, try to be an active person in all aspects - yes, you have to be active even when you feel like a dump.

Last piece of advice: Try to keep yourself under control whenever your teachers don't increase your grade. Or else, they'll snitch about it to your mother.

Sincerely,

Your Sixteen-Year-Old Self

PS Writing this made me feel so good about myself. I think everyone must do this. 

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