(Cortes Island, BC; photographer unknown)
Once upon a time when I was twelve and wore a white Nike hat backward…
“I’m not a pretty girl, it’s not what I do”
– ani difranco
Dear twelve-year-old Jess,
You’re about to start eighteen really hard, long years.
So you need to know that you are brave; that you’re more warrior than goddess and that’s one of the best things about you. you need to hear that you’re not a pretty girl and that’s not what you’ll ever do. You’re going to do other things.
But love, it’s not your responsibility to fix or save or protect or mend or keep secrets that should never be kept. Because bad secrets are bad medicine. You don’t have to make everyone happy anymore and you don’t have to keep things in balance. You can let go. Everyone is safe. You can even let go of me because I’ve got me now.
Love your thirty-year-old self on her 30th birthday,