Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Dear Sixteen Year Old Self,

Dear 16 year old self,

've thought about how to approach this letter without sounding like a secure, happy woman, because believe it or not women like you are not celebrated in 2013. Women like you are accused of fake "having it all", or settling, and so many other negative things. Despite society’s bizzaro views you are happy and secure. When people read this and get in their feelings, don’t worry because you have family and an amazing support system.

I finally got the strength to write this letter after being asked “Which of us didn't have an awkward moment in high school?”  And for the first time you answered NOT ME! Why?  Because you didn't. That old wives tales "Good Black Don't Crack" is nothing short of the truth, and besides wearing high heels and dresses you haven't changed a bit since 8th grade( oh and better hair) physically. But you have grown, your view of the world is like a kaleidoscope shaped by your many experiences you've had.


At 38, you have some of the greatest friend you will ever have, and in this ever changing city that’s not easy. A few years ago you were able to reconnect with your friends from 20+ years ago and it's pretty awesome. It's a great feeling knowing that despite distance, all of you continue to support and love each other. Now I’d be lying if I said that friendship has been simple. You've had the battle of letting people go, frenemies, negative Nancy’s and others that just never how to be a friend. The years, the laughs were real and sometimes you miss them, but eventually you get to a place of calm....No a place relief. Which make you happy, and able to see who were just passing seasons in your life. Reading this it may sound scary and even a bit lonely, but it has allowed you to select a circle of friends that keep you grounded. Women (and men) in different phases of life, striving to be better and that's everything you need. 


(Y'all know Black does not take pictures, HHAHA)

Sshhh Don't tell him about this one!

Yes, My dear you are married, you have a great son and a little one on the way*. You’ve always been anti-marriage and well kids… JUST EWWW and well life has turned out to be pretty awesome. You’ve had to sacrifice your alone time, but there is something about these magnificent Giants that comforts your soul.
At 16 you're still feeling ill towards your dad and his choices, it takes time and hard work but you eventually move on.  HEADS UP: You're going to let those insecurities seep into your current relationship, it will cause friction and you will feel a level of heartbreak you never knew possible.  . But you emerge stronger and demanding better for both you and your husband.

You're a good mom; you would sacrifice everything for your sons just like your mom did for you. But there are moments when you feel overwhelmed and we know how that ends in our family, DEPRESSION. You have sought help that allows you to share your every though free of bias so that you never fall into the cycles.   Your therapist often points out, what many in your family forget, strength and the determination to be who you want to be, not who others think you should be or do are how you avoid these pressures. And you do your best to remember that. 

For many years you were afraid to stop and survey the world around you. Always on the move never seeing the effect you might be having on others (good and bad). And despite what you think, there have been lots.  You don't find out about the affect you have had on others until much later in life, because you're kind of self centered and believe that everyone is doing the same or have lived the same as you. It’s not true and your good friend from Tiffany is kind enough to point that out to you regularly. Bless her heart! So you're working on this control thing especially when it comes to other people's lives. :). 

You've always lived by the motto that in the end: Men come and go, kids get older but your sisters are forever! And though that remains true, life isn't always that simple. The three of you are moms, career women and sometimes you just don't see eye to eye. So what do you do? You work harder. You've struggled with your ego when it comes to this, but  now is the time to put all of that aside and Work harder !!! Tell them they have to work harder too. We may not live on Howard anymore but we are forever young, forever those girls!

Your mom is okay, she's had a hard two years, especially after losing Bob. You and your sisters need to fill that void as much as you can. Even when she's driving you crazy about things SHUT UP and let her speak her mind, then let it go. *whispers* you've been known to carry a mean grudge* She's your mom and no matter how rich, how skinny, how fat, or how carefree you get she's always going to see you as her baby and try to protect you. Let her do her job :).

here isn't much left to say, you're making good choices and living the life you want. On your 30th birthday you decided that society’s definition of having it all wasn’t your dream, and you’ve made your own!
  • You've been strong enough to create your own way in this world.
  • Pain and loss have taught you to be a better friend, but also to stop losing yourself in other people’s problem because of your need to fix them.
  • Life has taught you to be cautious, but daring enough to know that sometimes you have to fall before flying. The fall may be long, or short it may cause bruises but they are necessary and build you up.

And though you don't attend church often (to your Nana's dismay) you're building a pretty strong relationship with Jesus and my dear he hasn't failed you yet!!! 

So 16 year old Ra, I hope I've shed some light on your future. You’re an amazing woman; you're smart, happy and most importantly comfortable in who you are and what you've accomplished. Life isn't easy, and you have been known to make it harder, but life is short and there is no room for regret.

So remember what Dr.Seuss taught you....."You have brains in your head, and feet in your shoes you can steer yourself wherever you choose. “Now go out and LIVE. 

With Love,

The Dexterous and Deft 38yr old Rashida.

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