Finding Ninee » Sharing our parenting and special needs stories with heart and humor.

A Letter to My Younger Self

YOUTH THEN: Eat pop rocks and drink soda and your stomach explodes until you die.

Dear Younger Me,

One day, you’ll write a letter to you, now, from the perspective that comes from time. A letter to my younger self, you’ll think.

Keep in mind that the person I write to will always be younger than the one on the keyboard. After all, every second, I become less young than I was.

As I write tonight, I’m writing to you at eight, 12, again at 20, 30, and 40. I’m also writing to five-minutes-ago-you, and to the you that you’ll become in years ahead.

Think about what you want me to say. Listen to the advice in your heart now, because you’re probably right.

A Letter to My Younger Self - findingninee.com

To younger me, I say:

Be swept away, but never fully.

Try lots of the things, but be wary of the things you try and say no when you need to, even if that answer disappoints everybody but yourself.

Forget what people may think. What you think is the only thing that matters. I promise.

Stick in there when it’s hard. Nobody learns anything from easy.

Wear sunscreen. Even when it’s cloudy.

Don’t start smoking. You’ll regret it. I know that it’s peace and solitude now. Later, it will be worry and regret. Just don’t start. Or, stop now.

Try marriage if you’re ready. You’re not ready if you feel like “should” is bigger than “want,” and you’re not ready if it feels like a pain in the ass to separate your CD collection. One day, nobody will know what a CD is. As I type this, you haven’t purchased one in years, and have gotten rid of almost all of your old ones.

Keep cycling. You’ll never like running. Ever. Keep moving when you can. There will be years when you can’t, and that’s okay too. The effects will be less-so if you keep moving now. When you can, that is. Some days, crawling back into bed is okay too. But also, get up sometimes before you’re ready. Do something. Make something. Be something that you’re proud of talking about.

Be kind to yourself.

You’re not broken.

Don’t fake pleasure from sex. If it’s not good for you, too, then change that. Speak. Show. Maybe it feels embarrassing and needy, but your soul will get you back if you pretend that your needs aren’t important, too. And if your partner isn’t patient enough for that to happen? Not the right partner.

The above? Same goes for all of it. Not just sex.

Skydiving. Do it now, if you want to. Do it while it feels like you’re invincible. Once you have a kid – if that’s what you choose – you won’t want to risk it. The air rushing into your lungs faster than they can breathe while watching the ground come closer and closer to your face at terminal velocity is life-changing. You’ll feel like you can do anything. You’ll feel power.

To balance that power, go scuba diving. Scuba gives you quiet unimaginable above water. An unparalleled and humbled peace.

Hug. Hug hard, and only hug when you mean it.

Be something that you’re proud of talking about. If you’re not her now, walk towards her. Embrace her. She’ll surprise you in the very best of ways.

Listen to the silence inside. Blast the music when you need to, but walk outside and hear the quiet, too.

Know that you’re not alone even when you’re alone.

Picture the woman sitting on her stoop in Egypt, in France, in Greece, in Africa. We’re all looking to the skies for answers. We’re all looking inside of ourselves for them. To our friends.

Make friends. Real ones that you can talk to. Walk away from the ones who only ever want to talk about themselves.

See everybody as people. Smile at the girl at Target who has a talk-device strapped to her. Teach your son that when she jumps and points at him that she’s excited. That it’s okay for him to be shy (because he will always be shy just like you were). Teach him that it’s okay to ask questions about why she can’t talk even though she’s taller than he is.

Smile at that girl’s mom. Smile at the people you feel like you should pretend to not see.

Pause to say “You, too!” to the special needs worker at your local grocer’s, when he says “Please have a nice day,” or his version of saying it.

Know that today, life may feel like it sucks.

But overall?

Life will be beautiful. Especially if you try to help build a land of empathy and wonder. If only two people are kinder tomorrow because of you, you’ve begun to change the world.

Life will also be hard and there will be nights when you wonder at the why of it.

Hang in there. One person’s sentence, or touch, may just change you.

And you, because you believe in life and in something bigger than you are, may just find a way to change the whole world.

Life will be beautiful.

You just have to let it be.

kristi rieger campbell finished post for finding ninee

This has been a Finish the Sentence Friday post. This week’s sentence, brought to you by Michelle of Crumpets and Bollocks is “Dear Me…”
Hosts: Me (Kristi of Finding Ninee)
and Michelle -above- Crumpets and Bollocks.

 Loading InLinkz ...


  • Kelly L McKenzie - This is the post I knew you would write with a prompt of Dear Me. Absolutely splendid. From the honesty during sex to the skydiving. Damn. It’s good.December 17, 2015 – 10:05 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Aw Kelly! What a sweet, sweet thing to say. Thank you so very much. xoDecember 18, 2015 – 3:41 pmReplyCancel

  • Dana - I love all of this. But my favorite is “One person’s sentence, or touch, may just change you.” We are all connected, and sometimes it’s easy to forget that.

    Oh, and the sunscreen one is my second favorite.December 17, 2015 – 10:06 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I wish I’d had this letter for just the sunscreen reason back in my teens and early 20’s when I fried myself over and over! And thank you!!!December 18, 2015 – 3:43 pmReplyCancel

  • Allie - I think this is my favorite Kristi post – ever. Seriously. Beautiful. And um, you skydived? Yikes. No, tell your younger self, no. But, that’s just scardy pants me. Yes, to the no smoking and to wearing sunblock. Good lord, what were we thinking? But this, this is poetic: “Be something that you’re proud of talking about. If you’re not her now, walk towards her. Embrace her. She’ll surprise you in the very best of ways.” Shivers! Love…December 17, 2015 – 10:07 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Allie! Really? Wow. Thank you so so much my lovely friend. I’m so glad it’s one of your favorites! Wow. And yeah, I’ve been skydiving five or six times I think. It’s actually a blast but I wouldn’t do it now that I’m a mom. xoDecember 18, 2015 – 3:52 pmReplyCancel

  • Deborah L. Bryner - Love it! Well said indeed…December 17, 2015 – 10:08 pmReplyCancel

  • Nicki - Stunning.
    “Hug. Hug hard, and only hug when you mean it.”
    And also skydiving. And really the whole thing.
    xoxoDecember 17, 2015 – 10:23 pmReplyCancel

  • JT Walters - Dear Me,

    Your son with two rare disorders is an incredible gift in that has earned you the title of Mom but also Pioneer of new territories, as all special needs Mom’s are, and while you are a pioneer your experiences, feelings, trials, hardships and joys are not unique at all. The world is filled with incredible pioneer parents that you have been blessed by their friendships.

    You are forging a new path but so are so many others. Sometimes you do not see that as clearly because you are forced to fight so hard for even basic rights like medicine when your child is sick. The pain you feel when your child is denied medicine or services you would not wish on your worst enemy and yet your child is still without which means someone has wished it on you and him.

    Your son has done better than anyone has ever expected and the government has given both of you nothing but an exceptionally hard time.December 17, 2015 – 10:39 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Sigh. Sorry you’re still having a rough time getting Alex what he needs. I agree though that all special needs moms are blessed and pioneers.December 18, 2015 – 3:57 pmReplyCancel

  • Christine Organ - What a lovely and wise letter.December 17, 2015 – 11:03 pmReplyCancel

  • Janine Huldie - That last line summed it up perfectly and seriously what a great letter to your younger self. I actually have something written from an old FTSF we did and edited it slightly and am going to link up tonight. Hope that is OK 😉December 18, 2015 – 3:02 amReplyCancel

  • Lizzi Rogers - So many pieces of good advice, and so many ways younger-me needed to listen to younger-you, yet in typical headstrong fashion, refused or couldn’t hear you. So many ways now-me needs to listen to now-you. I expect the future will be no different and there will be refrains of me, sulky and shamefaced, and you (unsuccessfully) trying not to crow about being right. Because you are and have been, so much.

    I’ve always loved the way you’re determined to change the world for Tucker, so that it’s a kinder and more beautiful place for him to live. I’ve seen the impact – you’re succeeding, and it’s inspiring and wonderful to behold.

    And in spite of whatever rights or wrongs or ups or downs of your past, you are the person you are RightNow because of them, and you’re pretty fucking awesome. I suspect the same will be able to be said of five-minutes-from-now you, and five-weeks-from-now you, and five-years-from-now-you. So there’s that.

    Onwards and upwards, my friend. I’ll try to keep watching and learning 🙂December 18, 2015 – 7:25 amReplyCancel

  • Katy @ Experienced Bad Mom - Kristi, so beautiful! I needed to read this today. I loved reading about hugging hard, being kinder, forgetting what people may think and wearing sunscreen.December 18, 2015 – 7:33 amReplyCancel

  • Emily - I think this is one of my favorite posts of yours, because I simply love everything you’ve told your younger self…all so important and relevant and real. I think these kinds of thoughts are so meaningful, especially during this time of year as we celebrate, reflect and look towards a new year. Happy holidays Kristi!December 18, 2015 – 10:46 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Really? Wow. That’s so so sweet, Emily. Thank you! Happy holidays to you and your family! I hope they’re magical and memorable.December 18, 2015 – 6:40 pmReplyCancel

  • Emily - And, I just noticed that someone else above also said it’s her favorite post of yours…I swear I didn’t see that until after I wrote that it was my favorite…which means only one thing: this is an awesome post. 🙂December 18, 2015 – 10:47 amReplyCancel

  • Michele - Kristi, this is beauty at its finest. The lessons we want to tell our younger selves aren’t always happy or easy, but they are a testament to just how strong we are, now. And damn, girl, you have done it all! Skydiving? Scuba diving? Buying CDs?!? 🙂December 18, 2015 – 11:29 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - LOL to the buying CDs being on the same list as skydiving and scuba, Michele. And yeah, but I lived for a long time before I got Tucker, so there’s that. xo to you and very happy holidays to you and your beautiful family. Did you send a photo to the doctor’s office? I hope so. xoDecember 18, 2015 – 11:38 pmReplyCancel

  • Reta Jayne - Holy moley, Kristi! Thank you for this. It almost felt like you could be writing it to me too… I loved it so much, it had to be shared on my personal FB page… Who knows? Maybe it’ll have a similar impact on someone else…December 19, 2015 – 12:27 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Wow, Reta Jayne – thank you so much for sharing it. I’m glad that you enjoyed it so much and really appreciate you saying so. 🙂December 19, 2015 – 5:08 pmReplyCancel

  • Diana Pratt - Gorgeous. Just gorgeous.December 19, 2015 – 1:09 amReplyCancel

  • Lola Marguerita - Perfect. I’ve written a similar letter but to my kids…it doesn’t include the skydiving…December 19, 2015 – 11:23 amReplyCancel

  • Kenya G. Johnson - I try to hug only when I mean it but huggers don’t see the invisible barrier. LOL!

    But seriously so many good points here. I love how you went deep, and broke it down to even your 5 minutes ago self. And I just LOVE this post. I feel like you just threw a warm blanket around me – with words that say there’s still time, hang in there, life will be beautiful, it just has to be.

    P.S. Today I’d rather sky drive than scuba dive. I snorkeled in Jamaica this summer that was beautiful but it took my breath away above water. I can’t imagine being all up in it.December 20, 2015 – 10:27 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - LOL to the invisible barrier, Kenya! And for me, I found scuba diving to be easier than snorkeling because when you’re on the surface, you really feel the waves and current, but when you’re all up in it, you don’t, if that makes sense! So glad this post gave you a warm blanket even though it’s 70 something degrees and it’s Christmas almost! 😉December 23, 2015 – 9:41 amReplyCancel

  • Peggy Maki - Hi Kristi, my name is Peggy, I am a retired but not too old RN, I was asked to read your blog by a Doctor in Turkey, I am from Canada.
    This is the note I received this morning from ilke,
    Peggy,
    This blogger is a very humanistic person. I hope that she will be aware of GSH-immunity and her child will use it.Have U written her?
    She has a 4 yr old autistic boy, this summer she wrote to me because she wanted to know if I could help her. I am just beginning to read blogs, I had not yet come across yours. I read your latest entry this morning and decided that ilke is most right. As she said you are a most compassionate, wonderful mom, mom’s with special needs children are acceptional in most cases. I use to be a special needs teachers assistant and most of my charges were autistic children of many ages and everywhere on the spectrum. This gave me a tiny tiny bit of realization of what a family life is with an autistic child. There is so much love and a lot of compassion and hardship that goes along with this situation.
    It has become my focus to try to communicate with parents of autistic children and reach out to them to try to give my information so it is accepted. I know well that parents of asd have tried SO many ideas, regeimes, treatments, medications, remedies, modalities and most often some work but not effective enough it does sour them for new information. It might sound like a pitance and it is but it is a first step, since Aug this year with ikle’s help I have reached out to over 15 sets of parents in Turkey and so far each of these families are seeing benefits. Children are ranging in age from 4 to 13, most nonverbal, most about 1/2 way up the autistic spectrum, all have had special ed from early age, all have had exceptional supplements beyond, all have absolutely caring and loving progressive parents, all were not seeing results they wished to until they heard my science. It is because of Doctor ilke Topcu that gave me the push and go ahead to get out to parents of autistic children and give them my information. SO here goes for you ………… I pray you will read and understand, I pray that you will ask questions, questions give the mind peace and realization that there is a missing link to theri puzzle, their highly intellingent most often genius child has a way to emerge from their clouded brain.
    I cannot begin to imagine how frustrating and painful that is must be to be so clouded in your brain that you have to learn daily how to cope with everything. Not being able to form new pathways, having the ones that are formed clogged and blocked, it must be so hard to feel sick in your stomach most days because the nutrients are not being absorbed, your cells are not getting the nutrients they need, your cells are crying out for help and all you can do is cope with each moment in the day that is. Not being able to communicate well, if at all, I cannot imagine. I also cannot imagine the ability of these brains because in all this they learn to cope, in their own way but they cope.December 20, 2015 – 1:23 pmReplyCancel

  • Peggy Maki - Hi Kristi, my name is Peggy, I am a retired but not too old RN, I was asked to read your blog by a Doctor in Turkey, I am from Canada.
    This is the note I received this morning from ilke,
    Peggy,
    This blogger is a very humanistic person. I hope that she will be aware of GSH-immunity and her child will use it.Have U written her?
    She has a 4 yr old autistic boy, this summer she wrote to me because she wanted to know if I could help her. I am just beginning to read blogs, I had not yet come across yours. I read your latest entry this morning and decided that ilke is most right. As she said you are a most compassionate, wonderful mom, mom’s with special needs children are acceptional in most cases. I use to be a special needs teachers assistant and most of my charges were autistic children of many ages and everywhere on the spectrum. This gave me a tiny tiny bit of realization of what a family life is with an autistic child. There is so much love and a lot of compassion and hardship that goes along with this situation.
    It has become my focus to try to communicate with parents of autistic children and reach out to them to try to give my information so it is accepted. I know well that parents of asd have tried SO many ideas, regeimes, treatments, medications, remedies, modalities and most often some work but not effective enough it does sour them for new information. It might sound like a pitance and it is but it is a first step, since Aug this year with ikle’s help I have reached out to over 15 sets of parents in Turkey and so far each of these families are seeing benefits. Children are ranging in age from 4 to 13, most nonverbal, most about 1/2 way up the autistic spectrum, all have had special ed from early age, all have had exceptional supplements beyond, all have absolutely caring and loving progressive parents, all were not seeing results they wished to until they heard my science. It is because of Doctor ilke Topcu that gave me the push and go ahead to get out to parents of autistic children and give them my information. SO here goes for you ………… I pray you will read and understand, I pray that you will ask questions, questions give the mind peace and realization that there is a missing link to theri puzzle, their highly intellingent most often genius child has a way to emerge from their clouded brain.
    I cannot begin to imagine how frustrating and painful that is must be to be so clouded in your brain that you have to learn daily how to cope with everything. Not being able to form new pathways, having the ones that are formed clogged and blocked, it must be so hard to feel sick in your stomach most days because the nutrients are not being absorbed, your cells are not getting the nutrients they need, your cells are crying out for help and all you can do is cope with each moment in the day that is. Not being able to communicate well, if at all, I cannot imagine. I also cannot imagine the ability of these brains because in all this they learn to cope, in their own way but they cope.December 20, 2015 – 1:23 pmReplyCancel

  • Peggy - TO continue: So my science is an amino acid that has been proven to be deficit in the bodies on the austistic scale. It is for a number of reasons, Glutathione, GSH is either deficit or non functioning in its Deoxification job in that body. GSH has a few crucial jobs in the body but the one most affected in the autisitic body is detoxification.
    Science has proven beyond a doubt that heavy metal overload in the autistic body is huge, metals tend to go to the weakest link in a body, in the autisitic body it is the brain and the Digestive system. In a body adaquate with GSH concentrations there is high concentrations of GSH in the brain, eyes, lungs, liver and kidneys. It is because of the jobs GSH does.
    There are many kinds of GSH in the body, the one that deals with detoxification is a sulphur based one, it acts like sticky fly paper in the body, it recognizes every and all foreign entities, metals, toxins, pollutants, weak / abnormal cells, virus / bacteria ( mutated, latent, active, intra or extracellular ) and attaches itself to them and removes them in a normal natural process thru the kidneys and lungs. GSH is up to 85% intracellular concentrations in cells, it is in every part of our bodies, even in the bone marrow. Because it is so high intracellular it is so important to get it into the cells.
    I am sure most if not all of anyone reading this long post will say enough of GSH because I have tried it and it did not work, or was not enough like everything else I have tried. However this is where money and science comes in to play.
    GSH being extremely well researched world wide and proven in its jobs is pure science, the fact that this is, is economic, big business is GSH and many companies formed providing GSH for consumption but they are not effective for a few reasons. GSH is a big molecule as far as molecules go, it CANNOT be accepted into the cell in its full form, this is the missing link to GSH delivery. There are GSH products in HFS and internet everywhere, they are in forms of sprays, pills, powders, patches, IV, all the products offer the full amino acid so it cannot enter the cell, since 85% of GSH is intracellular you can see why GSH is not being effective for our cells. You only gain about 40% benefits and when dealing with illnesses and toxins overload if you don’t get GSH into the cells; you need to get intracellular help or you are not going to clear the body.
    Science in late 90’s proved that our cells require to replenish their own GSH, it is the Natural order of this process,December 20, 2015 – 1:26 pmReplyCancel

  • Peggy - Kristi, I have so much information but I cannot put it in your reply section, I guess I have to pray that you will contact me and know that I am sorry to post my first part twice!!! Who does that, me because I am not to proficient at blogs!!!!!! I will try one more time to post……………December 20, 2015 – 1:32 pmReplyCancel

  • Peggy - Kristi I can’t post what I wished to, so my number to contact me is 250 – 422 – 3163, my email is [email protected]otmail.com, I was just contacted from ilke to ask if you had replied to me, so far not, so I have to hope you will. In the meantime I wish you a wonderful evening and do take care………
    ilke’s son Tuna, in July he was pretty well nonverbal, he was non social, he had periods of tantrums but not too bad. He was truely in his own little world, many allergies, poor digestive system, sleeping poorly. Ilke is a Pediatric Immunologist and Allergist and was SO frustrated she was just not quite able to help him and it was then she contacted me.
    This is what she said of Tuna only 3 days ago,
    Dec 17 / 15
    Tuna is so well. Every day he says and does something new. His memory has sharpened and became strong as a knife. He is a happier child with his wonderful potential giving rebirth to the world. I want to give a huge kiss to the person who invented GSH-immunity:)
    I communicate, I LOVE my children I am helping, I have all their pictures, I aid the families along their healing journey, it IS differant for each child, if I have communication I can help them.
    I know I can help your son, you need to make the first step, do take care PDecember 20, 2015 – 7:40 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Peggy,
      Thank you for reaching out and for the information. I appreciate it and will look into it. Thank you.December 23, 2015 – 9:44 amReplyCancel

  • Deborah Lovel Bryner - The absolute WORST sunburn that I have ever received was in 1976, on an overcast day, whilst enjoying the wonders of Shelter Island in San Diego Harbor…It was weeks before I could stand the feel of anything but the softest of cottons on my skin. My babysister, Lisa, who is a blonde, actually BLISTERED. Lesson learned…December 21, 2015 – 5:29 amReplyCancel

  • Tamara - I love the part about not faking pleasure.. for anything.
    Also, “Be swept away, but never fully.” That’s sort of my thing. My goal.
    It all reads so perfectly. May we all follow this advice, young and old.December 21, 2015 – 10:16 amReplyCancel

  • Lisa @ Golden Spoons - Simply Beautiful!December 21, 2015 – 3:18 pmReplyCancel

  • Sandra - I was actually welling up with emotion near the end of this post, but I’m at work, and I wasn’t about to cry in front of my co-workers so I diverted my attention back to the first cartoon of the kids talking about the Poprocks. I showed the cartoon to my co-workers, and then we started reminiscing about Tab cola…see what you started? 🙂 Beautiful post Kristi.December 28, 2015 – 3:45 amReplyCancel

  • Kirstenjill Hudkins Robbins - This is a great prompt and I’m really sorry I missed the post! At almost 50, I still find myself having to remind myself that what people think is not important. And YES – smile at people. It makes the day so much better and I can think of a thousand times where I just felt better because someone took 5 seconds and smiled at me in Target.January 4, 2016 – 12:29 pmReplyCancel

Your email is never published or shared. Required fields are marked *

*

*

CommentLuv badge

N e v e r   m i s s   a   n e w   p o s t !