Looking Back

Most days I dread getting the mail.  I mean, it’s just filled with bills that I don’t want to pay and junk mail I don’t want to open.  But every once in a while, something catches my eye and it’s not only my monthly Birchbox.  Yesterday, I opened up an envelope addressed by my mother and found this:


Isn’t that adorable?  And yes, that’s a kiss mark up above.  I can’t say I remember writing this, but I have a pretty good idea who it was formy first love who smooched me under the basketball hoop by his house when I was five.

It was so fun holding something from my five-year-old self.  As a five-year-old, I was large and in charge.  I loved being the boss and once told my mom that I wanted to grow up and be a “waitress and a manager.”   And I also loved having three younger siblings who would believe anything I told them and do anything I said…the minute I discovered that, my life became MUCH more fun!

So, yesterday, I thought about what I would say if I were to meet that determined, loud, and often annoying five-year-old Elizabeth.  Most of it were things my mom told me, kind of like my own “Stuff” my Mom Says, but I just wasn’t ready to listen:

  • I’m sorry your mom made you have a horrible boy cut while your older sister gets to have long hair…don’t worry, it will grow out.  And while you might not like your red hair, I promise you will grow to appreciate it.
  • You’re right, Whitney Houston and Wilson Phillips will never be topped.  Always remember to “Hold on for one more day”
  • Even though you think you can now, you will NEVER be able to tan.  Embrace sunscreen and floppy hats for they are your friends.
  • Your mom was right…calling boys from sleepovers makes you look desperate and annoying.
  • And speaking of boys, it’s quite alright to let them do all the asking.

But beyond the essentials in life: hair, skincare, pop music, and boys, what would I tell her about faith?  I’m definitely no expert, but there are a few truths I would impart on my five-year-old self, or at least write them in a letter for her to read when she’s 15:

  • You’re probably not going to grace the stage at the Oscars and that’s okay, God still has a perfect and beautiful plan for you.
  • There will be times when you feel lonely, abandoned and utterly alone, but I assure you, you are not.  Even in the loneliest of times, God will not leave you.  No, not ever!
  • There may be times where you can’t “feel” God, but don’t give up, He has not and He will not leave you.
  • You will face seasons where your heart is hurting and you don’t feel loved, and in those times, I pray that you will know and believe that you are loved with an everlasting love and His love is infinite and it is perfect.
  • Life isn’t going to always work out the way you planned, but it’s going to be okay.  God’s plans far exceed any plans we could make for ourselves.
  •  When it comes to love, believe it or not, God is the God of romanceyou can put your heart in His hands and trust Him to take care of you.
  • And you will face plenty of times in your life where you feel like a failure and you let God down, but always remember that God’s grace is infinite and there’s nothing you can do that will separate you from his love.

What would you tell your five-year-old self?