I’m over at Midwife of Words today sharing for my dear story sister Bethany’s It Is Written series. I’d encourage you to read some of the other posts in the series, too; there have been many gorgeous and freeing contributions.
In mid-January when I was thirteen, I filled a shirt box with trinkets and keepsakes, ticket stubs and notes from friends, and a letter written to myself. “Do Not Open Until January 23, 2012!!” I wrote on the box in sparkly purple gel pen, and I hid it at the bottom of a drawer.
At 23, I pull the now-dented box out of my closet, ten years and 600 miles from where I started it. The letter is in turns flighty and sullen, as you might expect from a teenager stuck in puberty and depression. I walk into my then-roommates’ bedroom. “Listen to this letter,” I say, “it’s hilarious.” We laugh about how I planned to get a horse and name her Arwen. I read on. “I’m fat and mostly ugly, and my clothes are bad but I am trying to dress better. What stores do you like? Did you grow up to be beautiful?” My roommates don’t laugh.