Dear 12 Year Old Me,
I know you feel like the dumbest person in the entire world when you don’t get all of your spelling words right. I know your stomach ties itself in more knots than the ones on your sneakers when mom doesn’t answer her phone. I know that you feel the same way way about the girl who sits next to you in English as you do the boy who sits across from you in math, and it scares the shit out of you.
Believe me, I know all about the self loathing and isolation that you feel. I know there are days when you think, “if I died today, it wouldn’t matter”.
I am not writing this letter to tell you that the feelings you posses will go away, because they won’t. There will still be days when you will want nothing more then to stop existing, to erase every last mark you left on this planet. I am writing this letter to tell you about the wonder, and joy, and freedom that you will miss if you give up the fight to keep existing.
You will miss the day when you come marching out of closet, to the beat of the biggest bass drum. Locking all of your inhibitions back inside the prison that held you captive for so long. You will not feel the shackles of secrecy and disgust being lifted off your strong wrists.
You will never get to feel the overwhelming sense of pride when you say things like “my body, my decision” or “fuck the patriarchy”. I know you’re not allowed to swear yet, but let me tell you, there is nothing more liberating than telling your oppressor to fuck themselves.
You will never get to walk down “Queer Street W.” during 2014 World Pride. Or be introduced to a community where you can be unapologetically yourself.
You will never get to see you favorite movies, or read your favorite books, or listen to music that feels like it was written just for you. Right now you are stuck in a whirlpool of middle school conformity, I promise you soon enough you will find out who you really are. (A raging humanist that likes wearing black and making sarcastic comments.)
You will never get a cat, your best and longest relationship. You won’t be there for your best friend when she shows you the scars from the monsters that plagued her for so long. You need to stay not only for yourself, but for the people that will need your petite shoulders to rest their weary heads on.
Most of all, I want you to know that you are not alone in this world. That there are people outside of our small hometown that think your sardonic remarks are funny, not “really rude and hurtful”. Also, there are worse things in this world than a bad haircut.
Keep your head up, always do what you think is right and remember, “You are you. Now isn’t that pleasant?”
P.S. You never do get better at spelling.
If you'd like to write a letter to your younger self, or read the stories others have shared, please visit yournotetoself.tumblr.com.