A letter to myself on my 23rd birthday.
My very dear Audrey,
For the 23 years in which we have gotten to know each other, I’ve seen you fall into the deepest of lowest and I’ve also witnessed your rise, your strength, your glory.
At times you have impressed me, you have really left me speechless by your boldness, your efficiency. At other times, I have wept for you. I have bled for you. I have felt for you. I have wanted to move mountains and slay dragons just to console you & take away your pain.
You have been an extraordinary human being. You have made many people proud, you have shown love, you have given of your time - sometimes even of yourself - for others, friends and strangers alike. You have shown bravery when there was none to be expected of you. You have been a kind friend, a fun sister and a darling daughter (most times). And in so many countless instances, you have been more than what was expected of you. You have been here, you have been trying and don’t you think - for a minute - that your efforts have gone unnoticed.
You have had moments of unspeakable fear, of crippling anxiety. There have been times when you stopped believing, when your heart - blessings to it - was shattered by life circumstances, put back together only to be walked on again and again by emotional conmen. You have been through it; some things no one even knows. And that’s alright, because you’re still here, still willing to go for another round of fighting. Because you’ve figured it out; there’s nothing handed to you - not in your stars, you have to fight for what you want.
Now, today, makes it 23. 23 years of us, of slipping, falling, catching yourself to learn how to fall better. Given my awareness to your ever mood swing & change of heart, there’s something I need for you - today.
Today, I need you to recall your values. Today, for your birthday, as a celebration, I need you to stand in your truth. I need you to not settle. I need you to wish for more than average, than mediocre. I need you not to sleep on your gifts, on your talents. In the midst of all the extraordinary discoveries you are bound to make, I need you to preserve your essence and to always stand in your truth. I need you, Lord, I need you to expect more for your self, for your life. I need you to be all that you can be, not just occasionally, not just by moments but as a habit.
Let it be a favor, if it must be, that you will actively seek & expect the very best from every single one of your relationships. Let it be your birthday gift to yourself, to love yourself unconditionally, to sit comfortably in all this melanin without having to trade parts of yourself to please another - you’ve done that before and, never mind.
I am proud of you. You are spectacular human being. You stand to accomplish a lot of wonderfully great things and I can’t wait to bear witness to all that you will become.