This month, in honor of International Women’s Day, #DearMe is encouraging women to reach out (and back) to our younger selves with some good advice. With that…
Dear fifteen year old mkromd – Do not get that perm. Contrary to what you think, it will not change your life. In fact, it will cause more problems than it solves, and your family will photographically document all of them.
Dear twenty year old mkromd – Spoiler alert, you do not go to law school, and that’s OK, because you eventually learn that Woody Allen was right, yet again: The problem with attorney jokes is that lawyers don’t think they’re funny, and no one else thinks they’re jokes.
Dear twenty-five year old mkromd – Listen to me, this is the ONLY YEAR OF YOUR LIFE THAT YOU WILL ROCK A BATHING SUIT. Go put one on now, and wear it all day, every day until your next birthday; but don’t take photos, just in case you’re wrong... In my older self’s defense, you make loads of bad choices at this age. Inventing selfies could be one of them.
Dear thirty year old mkromd – Well done you, you learn that, “Everything matches black, especially black,” and your wardrobe is forever changed. This simple fact alone helps you dodge the whole, “Pink is the new black” bullet of 2001. Because, note to self, color of any kind makes you look like the Easter Bunny on acid. If you don’t believe me, just look at pictures of the fifteen year old you ... the one with the perm. She's wearing pastels. Seriously, God should have smited her on the way to her first day of high school for that look. That he didn't kind-of makes me believe he owes an apology to the 24,000 people he killed for complaining about their bread (Numbers 21:4-9). Also, clearly you haven't yet repressed the eight years of theology you had in grade school.
Dear thirty-five year old mkromd – This is the hardest year of your life. Your entire world gets shattered, and it may not make you stronger, but it doesn’t kill you either. Also, fuck him. You are not perfect, but you are not your flaws, and anyone who treats you like you are, doesn’t deserve you. You have played that game long enough; and, to quote the late, great Nora Ephron, “It’s time to be the heroine of your life, not the victim.” PS: Really, fuck him. And, not to spoil the ending, but everything ends up OK, even if you don’t believe me right now.
Dear forty year old mkromd – You learn a simple truth that you should have learned decades ago, “Very few people let the truth get in the way of a good story.” With that, two things: One, be grateful that you spent four decades on this planet and only had to learn that now. Two, take your mother’s advice, “Don’t jump off the high road. Even if they aren’t better than that, you are.”
And finally, from my forty-three year old self to my older self – I don’t know how any of it ultimately plays out, but I hope it makes for one hell of a good laugh. And now, I’m off to Appalachia for my mom’s birthday, then Winter Park for our annual ski trip. I mean really, how bad could it be? Talk to you later.