From one woman-child to another: A letter to my sweet 16

The_Dancer_by_complejoThe dancer, by complejo

Hi 16,

I’m not going to tell you what’s in store for us. We’ve never believed in future-telling (although it’s always fun to have our palms read – just because it feels so nice and tickly when people trace the lines on our hands) and we’ve never wanted to know what happens to us in the future. That doesn’t change with time, so I’ll respect that.

Let me tell you a little about myself though. Don’t worry – I won’t give too much away. I’ll be 25 in about 6 months and I’m freaking out about that a little. 25 is so old and scary and adult-sounding. I still feel like a kid metaphorically wearing shoes way too big for her.  I still have a lot of unanswered questions – sometimes I feel more 16 than almost-25. So while we’ve changed a lot, we still have a lot in common.

I know 16 was an age of swirling, engulfing insecurities so let me tell you a few things to maybe ease the teen angst a little:

Don’t worry that your grades aren’t perfect. They’re good grades although they’ll never be as high as your siblings’. That’s ok though. You are a different person, although the people around you tend to forget that a little sometimes. Don’t you forget ok?

People will continue to try and place you in neat, easily understood categories and you will always fight against that. You’re on the mark there. You’re a strange little creature sometimes, but those funny quirks are what make us, us.

Sorry, but your weight will never really stop being an issue with you. But let me give you a little hint – just because this is probably the ONE thing you will want to know about your future self: We lost weight. The circumstances behind the loss weren’t so great but yeah. It happened. I’ll wait while you cry a little with relief.

Don’t stop dreaming of love like in the movies. I know you worry that you’re setting your expectations too high, but – it really happens sometimes. It may not last, but it happens. And it’s better than you ever dreamed it could be.

Sex is. Well. I’m not going to give you anything more than: Sex is… Legen-wait for it-DARY. (you’ll be able to place the quote in about oooh, 7 years, and it’ll make you laugh, promise).

You fight against it sometimes but family is everything. Remember that, even when you don’t want to. You learn soon enough, in the strangest of ways.

Respect is a funny, nuanced thing. The most important people in your life have already taught you not to expect anything less from anyone in your life. They were right. If there are ever people who treat you like you don’t deserve it, either set them straight or leave them behind.

Now for the lecture, although I know you hate those. Take that sulky scowl off your face:

Work on the whole escape thing. You are way too comfortable running from your problems and avoiding conflict.

Pick your feet up a little. We know we’re lazy. We should really do something about it. Not tomorrow. We don’t have the luxury of being Scarlett O’Haras. Start working on it today. So will I :)

Grow up. But not too much :)

Funny – these are all things you’ve heard before. Listen a little harder, even when you want to rebel against people telling you what to do. Sometimes you have to suck it up and just do what you know is good for you, even though it’s a bit of a bore.

16, you’ve always wanted to live. Really live life instead of just going through the motions and being bored more often than not. I’ll tell you this: you do. And it’s awful and wonderful all at the same time. But you’re living. And it’s all worth it.



Ps – I tag Ms. Snazzy and Ms. Dee. Thanks for the tag, R.

Published by


The real truth is, I probably don't want to be too happy or content. Because, then what? I actually like the quest, the search. That's the fun. The more lost you are, the more you have to look forward to. What do you know? I'm having a great time and I don't even know it. - Ally McBeal

21 thoughts on “From one woman-child to another: A letter to my sweet 16”

  1. :) Thanks Electra, that’s really sweet of you. Can I break RD’s 2-person rule and tag you too?

  2. I LOVE IT! and I love you, u turned out to be a strong, intelligent, Beautiful woman inside and out…As for turning 25 i say bring it on..
    this calls for Cookie and cream Ice Cream when we get home…


  3. Delilah – Thanks :)

    Vann – Aw hun, thank you. Love you too and C&C icecream\ never sounded so good. 2 more hours to go!

  4. Awww… that’s so sweet… what I love is that little has changed, no regrets! Wish i had known you 9or of you) at that age too…

  5. We’ve been friends from 16 to almost 25 and I just want to say we maybe scared at 25 but we can hold hands and do it together okay? You’re going to do great,I promise. I’m proud of you and I love you.

  6. Angel: I was decidedly more bratty at 16 but even now still give my inner brat a run in the sun sometimes. Thanks :)

    Serendib: Thanks ;)

    Kaos: We first became friends at 13. Crazy, when you think how long it’s been. Crazy, but also wonderful :) Thanks darling – we will hold hands and do it together – we always have, haven’t we?

  7. Ever brilliant, you’ve figured it al at 16 i suppose and ur now is just telling ur 16, she is where she needs to be. change nothing, nothing changes. best of all NO REGRETS.

  8. Dee & PSIM: Thanks :)

    Lost Soul: It’s not that I had figured it all out at 16. I was insecure and upset a lot of my teenage years – but I know now that I needn’t have been. All a part of growing up :) But yes – NO REGRETS. Words I live by.

  9. beautifully written and engaging as always, Gypsy :)Now am tempted to write a similar letter to my 16 year old self, but that is too long ago, stuck in the dark ages :P Maybe I will write to my 25 year old self. And tell her that 25 is YOUNG, yes. :) Hugs…love you.xx

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s