If you could go back and whisper in your own ear....?

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If you could go back and whisper in your own ear....?

Postby LateBloomer » Tue Apr 18, 2006 7:33 am

What would you say to yourself and at what age? Me? I would go back to when I was 12 and explain that my mother was just small and afraid and that's why she couldn't express anything to me but cruel criticism. She made me believe that I had no future, but the truth was that she felt powerless and so couldn't offer me any hope. Now I know that the trajectory of my life was set following an attitude of defeat. How do you develop any ambition when you're afraid to even think about the future? I wish I could have told the sweet little girl I was not to let herself be discouraged...
And though the pools reflection often blurs before us: KNOW THE IMAGE
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Postby Tituba » Tue Apr 18, 2006 11:37 am

I'd give myself coping tools so I'd eat healthy and exercise. Thereby avoiding the large mountain I had to climb in later life.
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Postby audreyh1 » Tue Apr 18, 2006 6:20 pm

I think I'd tell the teenager that she was WORTH being treated well by boys/men. Men who didn't treat her well indicated something was wrong with THEM, and to pay attention to the men who treated her well. Audrey
I have uncluttered my life and I now live my dream full-time!
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Postby Quest » Tue Apr 18, 2006 8:40 pm

Quite a question, latebloomer. I also grew up with a mom (and Dad) who didn't have a clue how to help a kid develop confidence. She'd had no experience with it that she could share. Her thought was that education is the answer because of the choices it can provide (she was the oldest of four in a family where the Dad walked out when Mom was 10 - he was alcoholic) and she quit school in the 10th grade I believe. I, on the other hand, have years of education and no more confidence (i.e., 'strong sense of self') to show for it. I'd tell that little girl that her anger is valid and that her feeling that things just don't make sense, makes sense. I'd tell her that I understand her feelings of hurt, even if she can't recognize/isn't able to acknowledge those feelings right now. I'd tell her that I'd always be there for her - no matter what. No conditions. I'd tell her that together we'd learn to trust each other and, most importantly, trust ourselves. And then I'd have to show her. I see and talk with my Mom, now in her late 70s. We are close, but there are several issues that are better left alone as we'll never understand them in the same way (although I've attempted most discussions). I see her in me. Sometimes it's a pleasant surprise. Sometimes not so much. I still have a lot to learn about patience and acceptance.
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Postby velvet » Tue Apr 18, 2006 9:35 pm

I'd whisper to myself all along... I'd tell myself that I was ok, that I had strengths as well as challenges, that nobody had the right to hurt me, and that I have the right to be safe, loved, and well cared for. that I had the strength to not only get through the worst experiences, but that I had the strength to shine through them, and the strength to face the hardest things and stand strong throughout. That my strength would amaze me and others. That I was one of those people willing to grow and take on challenges, and that it was rare and special. To listen to my visions/dreams/instincts and be at peace with them, because they were true. To know that I am ok, right now, no matter what is going on.
I see that they are happy, not because they got luckier than all the rest of us when they found each other, but because they passionately desire and believe in their happiness.- Susan Page Destination, Determination, Deliberation! - Twycross, HP&TH-BP
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Postby LateBloomer » Wed Apr 19, 2006 9:13 am

I would tell myself...continually...that its better to look silly, fail spectacularly...fall a million times...learn from my mistakes...; that any effort is worth more than sitting on the sidelines criticizing, envying, watching in fascination those who actually have the guts to get 'in the game' :o Every time she said 'yes' to life I would applaud her. Every time she fell I would help her up and pat her on the back for being strong and brave and hopeful. Every time she succeeded in something I would be the first person to say 'I'm proud of you, baby...and not at all surprised...' That's the kind of mother I would have hoped to be.
And though the pools reflection often blurs before us: KNOW THE IMAGE
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Postby Starfish » Wed Apr 19, 2006 2:28 pm

Okay this will sound very self-absorbed....but when I turned 14 or so I decided to write my future (adult) self a letter. I did--in fact I ended up writing a few of them during my teen years. About a decade later I was fortunate enough to find them among some old papers and wrote back to all those past people I'd been. It was quite moving for me... I can't recall the details now as it has been many years since I looked at that exchange, but in my early letters I described the beauty and confusion and disillusionment of growing up, and asked my future self to remain true to herself, to preserve her integrity. I also asked her what her life was like and wished certain things for her. In my responses, I was surprisingly tender for someone who normally berates herself. I thanked the teenaged "Starfish", responded to her concerns and questions, and let her know what I wished she could have had, known, experienced. And in a way, I forgave myself. Hard to explain for what. I just forgave myself for all the struggle, for all the pain, for what I couldn't have known, what I couldn't have done, what I couldn't have been. And I renewed my commitment to keep growing despite all the difficulties of life. It was really neat. I recommend any interested actually put their thoughts to their younger self/selves into letter form. I don't know why but it for me anyway it went deeper that way.
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Postby MDG » Wed Apr 19, 2006 7:09 pm

Gosh...! I think I'd like to have heard that all the best answers/solutions are very, very simple...very easy, and obvious. ...That the most difficult problems and tasks come from demands and limitations put on us by others. ...That it's better to focus on what is better than what is worse. ...And that frustration and embarrassment really do evaporate into kindliness and goodwill, after all. Excellent ideas, everyone! Mahara
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Postby Shiral » Wed Apr 19, 2006 7:34 pm

1. Change your college major from music to creative writing. Believe me, you'll be better at it, and better off learning something you're actually good at. (And your college has a better English department than it does a music department.) 2. Take the time to learn some more marketable job skills. 3. DON'T go to work in that retail science store right after college--it will be a trap. And that boss will be one of the worst people you'll ever work with. Melissa
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Postby EagleEyes » Wed Apr 19, 2006 7:42 pm

Excellent topic! Cool! I would tell myself to spend the (worthless) university money on a small house instead. Don't need to work so hard if the mortgage is already paid. And if you don't have to work so hard, you have time to sit and listen for the constant whispering in your ear from your future self. :wink:
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Postby ubu » Thu Apr 20, 2006 4:48 pm

Starfish: That was a really cool thing you did! What a great idea. I would whisper to a very young me, and then continually from then on, that nearly all of my anger was fear based - and that I had absolutely nothing to be afraid of.
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Postby ScootermanII » Thu Apr 20, 2006 7:27 pm

I think I'd whisper in my ear a couple of dates when the market took some plunges the last couple of decades! LOL I think the main thing I'd say is, "Whatever the problem, you'll figure something out! Just hang in there." Stan
Very little is truly impossible in this day and age as long as you have the right resources available, the time to get the task done and have some creativity.
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Postby SarahC » Fri Apr 21, 2006 4:40 am

I would tell my 12 year old self: 'It's OK. You are NOT a bad person. They're angry at your dad's illness, not at you, so don't let them make you feel like slime simply because you're growing up and starting to have your own opinions.' I would tell my 16 year old self: 'You don't have to have a man in your life to make you feel good or valid. You don't have to act or dress a certain way to be loved. It's OK to not know what you want to do with your life yet. It's OK to be uncertain about your beliefs. Carry on with your art, but don't for heaven's sake go to art college because they'll only sap your confidence. And don't get rid of the guitar. You'll need it later.' I would sidle up to my 20 year old self on the train while her fiancé was asleep opposite her and whisper: 'Too darn right you don't really love him. I TOLD you you didn't have to have a man in your life to be worth anything. Please don't throw yourself away.' I would go up to my 25 year old self at the theater party and tell her: 'You don't need ANOTHER man to complicate things. You don't even need the one you've got. And you so do not like Faster Pussycat. Go ahead and mosh. You know you want to really.' I would tell my 31 year old self: 'Screw them all. If they can't keep their noses out of how you want to get married, elope.' I would not tell my 34 year old self anything. I'd just give her a big hug. I would tell my 37 year old self: 'Look, the Buddhist view of compassion is a great and noble thing, but we're not talking mindless obedience here. Your mother has consistently never been made happy by any of the changes she's badgered you into making, and she still keeps finding more stuff you should fix about yourself. Trying to please her isn't compassion, it's bowing down to emotional blackmail. Live your own life, make your own decisions and you'll be able to love everyone more fully, including her. Now go get yourself a cup of tea. And don't forget to go to the post office...' Hmm. Well, I'm older than I was five minutes ago. :wink: And maybe I DID know the answer all along...
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Postby LateBloomer » Fri Apr 21, 2006 11:15 am

Wow, SarahC... That was great!
And though the pools reflection often blurs before us: KNOW THE IMAGE
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Postby ScootermanII » Fri Apr 21, 2006 5:42 pm

You did learn something in 37 years. Build on that and try and find a brighter spot in the U.K., somewhere. It isn't raining all the time. Stan
Very little is truly impossible in this day and age as long as you have the right resources available, the time to get the task done and have some creativity.
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