Dear Younger Self,
OK, the content of this letter feels super heavy on my heart right now, so I ask that you really think about the contents of this letter. At some point in your late 30’s and early 40’s, you are going to start feeling stagnant, and wanting something more in your life. This is in large part, why you will start back up and finish your bachelor’s degree that you started before you got married. You have 7 kids now and a pretty successful marriage, but you will begin to wonder where else life is going. You’ll have questions flash through your mind like; Is your only purpose to be a mom, is that the only thing of real importance to who you are? Is there anything else to your life that matters and that you make a great contribution to? These types of questions will burn into your soul and will be the start of some game changers. But what I really want to say to you is to plead with you to find something that you are good at when you are young, before or during raising little babies. You will think to your self that being a mother is all you really want to do, and you have no real time for anything else, and that this will be the easiest route, and obviously the most important. Here is the kicker though, and it’s hard to admit, you will secretly think to yourself that you don’t even know what you would do if you had to work, so it’s (emotionally) safest to just focus on being a mommy because you know how to do that. Working and putting yourself out there is scary, and its just safer to stay indoors and be what the rest of the moms around you are doing, being a “stay at home mom”. But, please don’t settle there.
I want you to imagine right now that we are sitting on a bench together, and I have my arm around you, kind of like how a nice big sister would. We would be joking around and having fun together, and then I would tell you how smart you are and that you have something real to offer the world and to not ever forget it. I will tell you that mothering will be so wonderful but there are also other things you are meant to do in this life. I will ask you if you know what that is. You may not know, but it will get your mind going. You also might fight me on this and tell me that you need to stay home and be a mom. To which I will say that’s ok to do too. But what I am really telling you is that it will be very important for you to develop yourself and to have a focus of your time, to be on you and who you are. Maybe even start taking one class a semester when your babies are little. DO something that expands your mind and helps you to grow. Friends are awesome to spend time with at park days etc. but find some classes that interest you and stretch you. Maybe take a writing class and learn how to write better. Join Toast Masters and learn how to give better speeches. Maybe even start a group of women to get together to discuss topics interesting to you. You’re super good at gathering people together, this would be a good route too. Please oh please do things that feel good even when they feel scary. You will not regret this. It will help you push past your fears. Learn all about topics that interest you. Right now, in my 40’s, I feel unfulfilled. I’ve been mothering full time, for most of my kids’ years. And I regret not developing myself. Its really an awful feeling to feel unfulfilled, I didn’t always feel this, it’s only been in the last few years. So, you may not see the big important need now but trust me that it will help you along the way right now. It will help you to feel confident and give you a sense of purpose other than taking care of a household. It will also help with that need you will have to get out every week and do something with friends; because let me give you a little hint, getting out with friends does feel so good, but it will not squelch that need you have to create and fulfill other purposes you have.
Get on your knees and pray about this and ask your Heavenly Parents what you can do right now to fulfill your path on this earth. Then see what thoughts come to mind. You will be guided, because They really care about you and want to see you feel fulfilled. Heavenly Mother will know all about these feelings and can also help guide you, and She can help walk you through this too. Trust the feelings you get and don’t be afraid to talk about them with your husband. He may not seem super supportive at first, but he will come around because he loves you a lot. And remember, doing hard things makes us grow and it feels good to look back on times when we push past our fears and do things that make us feel alive, excite us, and that we feel called to do. You’ve got this girl!