On March 26, 2004, I wrote a letter to myself.
At the time, I lived in Chicago and was a newlywed, not sure of what I was doing with my life or where I was going. I had so many doubts about decisions that I had made about graduate school and my career. I intended to read that letter in exactly 10 years - on March 26, 2014. I wrote the date on an envelope, and sealed it. In my mind, surely I would have myself together in ten years.
Fast forward. I remember that I wrote the letter, and that this was the year to read it. I had forgotten the exact date. Last weekend, while searching in the back of drawer for something random, I found it. I realized that I was a couple months late, but it was 2014, nonetheless - exactly 10 years after I wrote the letter.
I stopped everything, grabbed a cup of coffee, and sat down to read it. I smiled at my young self, all of the fears that I had back then seem so trivial now. The amazing thing is, I am so different from that younger version of myself, but so very much the same. I was fighting to fit a mold, what I thought I "should be doing" and what everyone else told me I "should be doing". But all of the pitfalls and peaks and valleys were necessary to get me to where I am today.
I'm far from having everything figured out - but I am a mother now, wiser, and confident in my own skin. I know my likes, my dislikes, and I certainly don't question every decision I make. I know that only comes with age, which makes me look forward to getting older. I now know that motherhood is by far my most rewarding, yet most demanding job I will ever have. What people think of me is no longer issue for me, and I am so thankful for that.
Simply put, I am blessed and so happy with my life right now. That's something that I didn't have back then. And now I realize it is a choice that I make. Every single morning - to be happy. And I know that would not be possible without all of the life experiences it took to get me to this point. I look forward to where I will be in the next 10 years.
Simply put, I love this. I look back at how much I have grown and changed and I cannot wait to get older and wiser, and even more confident in who I am as woman. And yes, I plan to sit down and write another letter very soon - to be opened in 10 more years.