Wish I’d have known – life at 20

First, I’d like to preface my post this week regarding my advice for my life at 20 with a request. Please keep in mind that everyone’s path is different and mine happened to include becoming a mother at 19. I’d suggest there are bits of this advice that won’t apply to just any 20-something. But there are also parts that I hope would. I’m also hoping these words reach the people who need to hear them the most; I think they would have helped me way back then.

Ok… SO much happening and it’s all SO important! What can I tell you that you don’t think you already know? I say that tongue in cheek but not without more than just a few grains of truth and a whole lot of love.

Life at 20

Life at 20… Into the fire

My dear, you were in such a rush to escape from what you thought was the worst place ever that you jumped directly into a fire that would end up almost consuming you. The warning signs of troubled waters were there. It’s just that you were so certain of your path you didn’t see them. You were so focused on what you were trying get away from you didn’t see the danger on the road ahead.

This is going to be a hard lesson for you to learn; enthusiasm to take on new adventures is a wonderful thing but even you have limits to what you are capable of. There will be days that test you, that make you think you can’t carry on any further. You can. Be brave; you will need to be strong and you will be. And you’ll come out of this time with so much wisdom, self-knowledge and appreciation for the good and kind people you know and the beauty that can be found in peace that you’ll be able to look back on all these challenges and view them with a grateful heart. My advice for right now? Sometimes you just may have to try to focus on getting through the next hour, the next afternoon, the next night; take care of your mind and your body and your heart and you’ll get through.

Go towards something good

If you take anything away from this time in your life, try to remember, it’s important to go towards something good not only away from something bad.

You’ve chosen to have your children when you yourself are so young! Raising small children is a rollercoaster of joy, anxiety, fear, laughter and exhaustion; you’ll feel like you’ve lost yourself so many times but trust me, you haven’t. She’s still there and she’s becoming wiser, more capable and stronger as time goes on. Have faith. Breathe.

There will be days that putting yourself on a time-out might be a better solution that putting any one of the kids on one. Find ways to give yourself some space. Know that you are doing your best, even when you make mistakes and you will make LOTS of them. Keep living your life from a place of love in your heart and even when you make those mistakes, you’ll be able to rest peacefully knowing you’ve done your best. It’s ok. Know that your children love all of you, even your flaws. They don’t need you to be perfect but they do need you. Don’t let the fear and pain from the past convince you otherwise.

Hold on tight…

These years are going to fly by; in the middle of the night when you feel you’ve gone weeks without a descent amount of sleep, you’ll find that hard believe to be true but it is. Pay attention to the small moments of joy when you have them, as well as the big ones. They happen all the time and they’ll remind you how worthwhile and amazing all this is.

Keep on laughing loudly, dancing foolishly and hugging warmly. It’s who you are and she’s pretty great.

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