Fifteen

This post was originally posted on Tumblr in June 2014.

When all you wanted was to be wanted
Wish you could go back and tell yourself what you know now
– Taylor Swift

Right now I’m sick in more ways than one, and I don’t have anyone real to talk to, at least not today…they’re too busy or they don’t care, I don’t know. I’ll reserve judgment until I’m better…I’ll know for sure then.

Times like this sometimes I feel like talking to the Internet…maybe no one is listening, but hitting send makes me feel like someone MIGHT be.

I wish I could say that these moments are rare occurrences, but they’re not…and I am always reminded of when I was fifteen and I had someone to “save” me in my weakest moments. My problems back then were far fewer in number and less serious; if you ask me now they weren’t really problems at all, but rather things to be proud of.

But I didn’t think that at the time. I felt like I wasn’t as pretty as all the other girls, like I would never be loved by anyone. Except for my best friend. I also thought that my life was over at fifteen, apparently. I found a document recently in which I said, and I quote, “It’s grade 10, if I don’t move on with my life now, when will I?!” I just want to shake her by the shoulders and be like, “Oh, honey. You ain’t seen nothing yet. Things are going to get much harder from this day forward, but it’s going to bring you beautiful moments.”

I had someone then who would tell me I was pretty and smart and funny and talented, and if only I would just have a little more faith in myself, other people would see it too. I had someone who would promise that they’d never leave me; they’d always be there because they needed me just as much as I needed them.

I’ve never really heard anything like that since. Not to that degree or so sincerely.

I don’t have someone like that anymore. And now, I want nothing more than just to have someone tell me those things and really mean them, so I can feel loved and important to someone. But that doesn’t happen, so I tell them to myself. I may not be fifteen anymore but I’m still that girl. And if she was pretty and smart and funny and talented then that means I am too.

Everyone should know that it’s okay if nobody tells you they love you, if you never get asked to dance or to prom, if you don’t have a lot of friends (or even any friends), if you love someone who doesn’t love you back, if you don’t get invited out or to parties or anywhere at all, if you’re that person who stands up for all of the other people like you. It’s okay if you aren’t something, or never become something, or don’t get to do something, or don’t want to do something. It’s okay if you are something that no one else around you is. It’s okay if you want to do something that no one else around you does.

I’m more sad than I can ever possibly convey about the loss of that relationship…I’ve never seen anything more pure and innocent, at least for that relatively small window of time. But all I can say is thank you, for that moment which keeps me going even now, and reminds me that no matter what my circumstances are, somebody loved me once, when I don’t remember what that feels like. It’s become my mental grounding (a ‘trick’ to managing anxiety). I don’t think either of us ever thought that I’d remember it so clearly some 7 years later.

The thing is, based on that moment I know exactly what I need to hear – it’s what I’ve always needed to hear but just didn’t know it until then. I may be alone but if this is the way it’s going to be, I want to make things easier for someone else.

Just in case someone ever does come across this and you’re having a bad day, this is what I was told, and this is what I tell myself. If you need to hear something like this from someone – I’m saying it to you, and perhaps I don’t know you, but whether I do or not, I mean every word:

It’s okay. You’re going to be okay, because you are beautiful, and smart, and funny, and talented, and you are stronger than you think and capable of more than you know. It doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks. If you’re a guy, you are also all of those things, but if you’d prefer I can say you’re handsome instead of beautiful. You are everything  – anything – that you want to be; if you’re not there yet, you can get there. You probably have great ideas, even if they only exist as tiny sparks of hope right now. I promise you that things are not as bad as you think right now. Cling to those good things and rays of hope. It doesn’t make you weak or foolish or naive to believe that things will change.

Remember, I think that you’re perfect, so don’t worry about anything else.

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