Last Sunday I officially made three decades and a year. It’s hard to believe I entered my 30’s an entire year ago. 2017 feels like a blur. I spent my birthday weekend on a retreat in Cancun, Mexico and while I was there I had some time to really reflect.
I decided that I feel really good about where I am and who I’ve become.
It’s taken all of my 20’s, two babies, three full time jobs, a lot of unpaid invoices, one failed business, 3 failed relationships,much heartache and countless hours of therapy for me to finally be happy. With, just me.
Unconsciously when we become aware that “things” and “titles” and “accolades” can validate us among others, we begin a quiet obsession with them. We set out on a quest to get things like cars, houses and fancy shoes. We set up our lives to acquire titles like girlfriend, wife, employee, mommy or CEO. And we become addicted to the high that comes with accolades. It’s an eternal cycle of acquiring things to make ourselves happy and to make others proud, envious or in awe of us.
The pursuit of everyone else’s happiness.
Well folks, today, just one week into my 31st year – I’m grateful. Because I’ve learned not to give a damn. I have learned that the person whose happiness I should be most concerned with is my own. And I’m devoting year 31 to loving myself unapologetically. My only regret is that it took so long for me to get here. Oh, how much my life would have been different had I known then what I know now. I wrote a letter to my younger self. She deserves to hear from me. I hope she receives this with open arms.
Dear Younger Self,
I’m sorry for not loving you the way I should. You deserve better. Your curves are a gift. Your hair is beautiful whether it’s in an Afro, in box braids or sewn up under a straight haired wig. All of it is flawless, and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.
The fact that you give so much of yourself to others will come in handy when you become a mom. You will be an incredible mom. You will love and lose. You will cry many tears. But through it all, God will be right by your side. Listen to His Voice and believe Him when He says everything will be ok. Because it will.
At age 31, you will not have it all figured out but you will believe in yourself more than you ever have. You will have two beautiful children, a thriving business and a whole lot of experience in this thing called life. And guess what? You will feel unstoppable. You will BE unstoppable.
Always do your best. Don’t make assumptions. Don’t take things personally. Be impeccable with your word. These are four basic agreements you will learn in your coming years that will change your life.
You are awesome. I need that to sink in. Nobody and nothing “makes” you awesome. You just already are.
I love you, and I’m rooting for you.
Your Future Self
Photography: Maricarmen Arcos