Dear Debi (the 13-year-old with a skewed body image),
Hold your head high.You are beautiful even with a mouth full of silver.Don’t hide your smile in Freshman gym class. Smile big and hard with those big shiny braces, because one day that smile will light up the world for two of the most incredible little people that you will ever know.
Laugh your goofy Ricky Riccardo laugh because one day the man of your dreams will find it as endearing as you find it disgusting.
Write in your journal, put pen to paper and remember these moments because they are what will make you who you will become. Be fearless!
Try everything, go for your dreams, exhaust your potential.
Walk tall my love, 5’7″ may feel enormous at your age when you are towering over all the boys but in a couple of years, they will all be taller than you.
Your value in life is not measured by the size of your jeans and comparing yourself to others is a pointless waste of time. Besides, you are never as big as you think you are and eating disorders and body issues are so not the way to go. With it, comes years of shame and guilt and it will take years to undo the damage that you will do to your body.In the end, it only makes things worse.
Be the best you that you can be, that’s enough. That’s better than enough, its exhausting potential and being comfortable in your own skin. It’s amazing.It is more important than I can even make you understand. It is the kind of knowledge that I’ve had to learn the hard way.
No matter what box you have been put into by people and society, you are free. Your horizons are boundless. Your potential is limitless.
Breathe little girl, there is plenty of time for growing up, embrace yourself. You are the perfect you and what seems momentous today and earth-shattering will pass and make you stronger.
Love yourself with the reckless abandon that you would give anyone else who has a special place in your heart.You deserve it!
Sing at the top of your lungs, dance like nobody is watching, love like you’ve never been hurt, and laugh like Ricky Ricardo!
Your Older, Wiser Self
Imagine a world