Dear Younger Me,
There are many times when I think, “If I had known then….”. If I was able to give my younger self a few pieces of advice, this is what they would be –
- First and foremost, just say NO to the curly bangs. I know it was a different time; big hair is one thing, curly bangs are another. It is not a good look now, and it wasn’t then. Grow them, blow them, push them aside, just get rid of them.
- Have a career, not just a job. Doctor, lawyer, teacher, nurse – something you can fall back on. One day you just may need it.
- Stop dating the “bad boys”. You have horrible taste in men. Please go out with some of the nice guys who are interested in you. You deserve to be treated well and the guys you choose do not do that.
- Do not let go of all of your stuff. Keep pictures in a safe place; hold onto your Justin cowboy boots and little denim Levi’s shorts. The older you get, the more fun it is to have things from your past around.
- Try not to be such a nervous mother. Don’t sweat the small stuff. The right baby bottle, the right preschool, the big bat mitzvah; they really aren’t as important as they seem at the time. Your children will not be traumatized if everything is not perfect.
- During your engagement, remember that you are in it for the long haul, not just a wedding. Focus on you fiancé and your new life together, and not so much on the noise around planning a wedding. This is difficult because there is always a lot of noise.
- Moisturize and use SPF –the earlier you start, the better. I know how much you love the sun and you do look better with a tan, but your skin will regret it if you don’t protect it.
- Know who your true friends are and hold onto them. Whether it be a childhood friend or one you make later in life, you are lucky to be blessed with the best. Constantly tell them how important they are to you and never let them go.
- Take chances – don’t always choose the safe route. There may be some different opportunities that come your way. If you don’t try, you may always look back and think “what if?”
- You are stronger than you realize. There will be very hard times. Always remember you can get through it all. You are lucky to have the support of family and friends, but know that you have the capacity to come through anything by using your own power and strength.
- Try not to stress too much. Live in the moment and don’t worry about what comes next. Be happy. You never know when life will throw you a curve ball, so grab every moment of happiness that you can.
Xoxo – Me
Stacy was a stay-at-home mom/part-time preschool teacher whose life was turned upside down in 2011 when her husband passed away suddenly of a heart attack. She is raising her two fabulous daughters, now ages 18 and 20, who are turning into wonderful young women. In 2016, she started a blog about her experience as a young widow, The Widow Wears Pink. This led her to write for other publications including Huffington Post, Today.com, Scary Mommy, Grown & Flown, Kveller, Modern Loss, Thought Catalog, and many more. In 2018 she started Living the Second Act with fellow writer Mimi Golub. Today, Stacy and her daughters are happily living their “new normal” while always keeping her husband’s spirit alive.